Let’s Stop Thinking of Rest As the Enemy

I’m sick. And I don’t get sick often. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’ve got one of the best immune systems on the entire planet. And yet, seemingly like clockwork, it’s Christmas Eve Eve and my body’s pretty much telling me to quit and lay down and not move for an entire week. (I’ve got this pretty awful history of being sick on Christmas… which, by the way, is like the biggest bummer ever if it’s never happened to you.) The worst part though, is that I can tell it’s not one of those “I’ll feel better tomorrow” type colds. This thing is here to teach me a good, hard lesson.

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So this post is going to be pretty short. Because I do have a point I want to make (believe me, I wouldn’t be writing this post at LaGuardia right now if I didn’t feel like it was on my heart), but I don’t really have the mental or physical energy for beautiful metaphors and stories and relevance and all the stuff they tell you in English class that makes for good writing. So I’m just going to tell it to you straight. I’m pretty much pretending it’s just you and me in this crazy packed airport terminal right now. Because I have a crazy, intimate feeling that some of you need to hear this too.

I’m tired.

And I’ve been tired for a while. And while I am so, so glad to be on my way home (where I’ll probably be glued to the couch for 13 days straight), feeling this crappy is also this incredible, humbling reminder that I’m not superhuman. And that I’ve probably been pushing myself a little too hard. Hustling and getting up early and going to bed late and focusing on projects and dreams and forgetting that there’s this thing called rest that’s really, really important too. It’s almost like my body knows it’s the end of the year and I’m due for one of those physical and emotional “reset” buttons before the new year hits. Seriously though, does that exist? Because that’d be AWESOME.

If you know me, or you read my stuff often, it’s probably no surprise that I’m one of those people who feels guilty whenever I’m not productive. Somehow, I’ve convinced myself that every waking minute of the day is a chance to be productive, cross things off my checklist, make a good impression on someone. And while that stuff is all good, it’s not normal for us to be turned on and tuned in every second of the day. Or to think that all that stuff or validation from other people is really going to fulfill us anyway. And that’s a hard truth for me to hear. Because I’m the girl who likes to Instagram and scroll through Facebook and be on email at all hours and respond to text messages right away. But that’s not healthy. We shouldn’t have to be on call for everyone and everything all the time. Because how freaking exhausting would that be. (Apparently my immune system is hearing that message loud and clear).

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If there’s one thing that God’s definitely showing me this season, it’s that I’m pretty terrible at being still. And that I’m exhausted. And that it’s time to rest. To let myself sit still and not feel guilty about it. To turn off all the push notifications (every single one) and quit feeling pressure to share and like and be connected all the time. Because all the connection I’m going to need over the next week and a half is going to be inside that little house in Ada I’m on my way to right now.

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So—in all transparent honesty—I’m writing this as a reminder to myself just as much as I’m writing it to you. You go and take that holiday vacation. And eat all the things and curl yourself up in blankets way too long in the morning and drink way too many cups of coffee before you even think about getting dressed. And for the love of everything inside of you that’s screaming for peace and rest this season, let yourself rest.

And don’t you (even for a second), feel guilty about it.

Because I’m certain rest isn’t the enemy. In fact, it’s probably the antidote.

So if you don’t hear from me, or I don’t post on social media quite as much, it’s because I’m going to try my hardest to disconnect for a little while. Let my phone battery die once or twice (or for all of vacation???). Quit stressing and obsessing over little red and orange notifications. Quit pulling my phone out at the dinner table.

And I’ll be back next year — ready and refreshed and rested, and hopefully changed a little bit.

Wishing you and yours all the best this season, and a healthy & happy start to 2015.

XOXO

Meg

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