Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Taking Time to Rest and Recharge by Diane Burton


Recent posts here prompted me to write this one. Vonnie’s husband passed away. Alison’s had a major scare that required hospitalization. JL had hip replacement surgery. Each event resounded with the rest of us. We’ve either experienced those situations or something similar. Each event demands a break. A time to rest and recharge our bodies and creative energies.

We all need some downtime. We need to take care of ourselves. But . . . we’re women, the nurturers. We take care of others first. We ignore our own symptoms (physical or emotional) because someone else needs us. When my dad was dying, I worried more about my mother, his caregiver, than I did about him. I helped when I could, though my sister carried the brunt of the work. Mom’s health dramatically improved after he was gone. It might have gone the other way.


When Mom died, I was responsible for settling her estate. I was also working full-time along with trying to write. Without realizing it, I shoved down my grief to get everything done. Six months later, my mother-in-law passed. Although I didn't have the responsibilities of settling her estate, my stress at work was escalating. No time for grief. When a favorite aunt passed shortly after, grief caught up with me. Poor Hubs. He wanted to help, to make me better. Thank goodness for Hospice's grief counselor. First, she told Hubs he couldn't "make me better." That I needed time. Her best advice: give yourself permission to grieve.

Time away helps. The axiom “a change is as good as a rest” holds true. A change of venue or routine. After Dad passed, my sister took Mom on a mini-vacation. She came back refreshed, ready to tackle the details that needed tending.

When we push ourselves too hard, we run out of steam. When we don’t get enough sleep, our creative juices dry up. Stress, family issues, and other factors keep us up at night. We dwell on all we have to do, sleep eludes us. Without sleep, our bodies don’t work efficiently. Neither does our mind.


Take time to take care of yourself. Give yourself a break. Give yourself permission to not do anything. Rest, relax, and come back refreshed.


Diane Burton combines her love of mystery, adventure, science fiction, and romance into writing romantic fiction. She blogs here on the 16th and 30th of each month. She shares snippets from her stories every weekend on her blog.


15 comments:

Leah St. James said...

Such great advice, Diane. You're so right. We get so caught up in the demands of the moment/situation, we forget that we, too, are human.

Diane Burton said...

So true, Leah. We aren't Super Woman, either.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Couldn’t have said it better. We keep forgetting our down time is so necessary!! Thanks for the reminder, Diane.

Vonnie Davis said...

Wise words. Thanks for saying it so eloquently. I hadn't realized how tired I'd gotten from Calvin's time in the hospital and the shock of learning his end was so near. I've been taking a morning nap, an afternoon nap, and going to bed early.

Jannine Gallant said...

I never seem to take downtime. I don't sleep much. I go, go, go. Today I head to the RT convention. After the afternoon workshops and before evening events, I intend to do my monthly "Reno shop" for stables like dog food and shampoo. Hey, why waste those perfectly useful hours? One of these days I may crash and burn, but so far I haven't had time...

Rolynn Anderson said...

Jannine, your blessing is the job you have with its down time and alone time. Clever of you to take that position. Diane, thanks for the advice...we all need the reminders. Lately I've been doing some daily self-assessment...what part of the day made me happy? I'm working hard to fill my days with the good stuff :-)

Andrea Downing said...

Ah, Diane, thanks so much for these wise words. They've come very timely for me.

Alison Henderson said...

I'm sure I need to take a break, and I will, but not until I get this book published, do a final copy edit for a friend, and take OG to visit our daughter, who's in the throes of trying to buy a new condo. Isn't that always the way? One of these days, it's bound to catch up with me.

Diane Burton said...

Margo, you're welcome. We all need reminders of what we should do.

Diane Burton said...

Vonnie, your body is telling you that you need healing sleep. Listen to it.

Diane Burton said...

Jannine, I admire your energy. You're quite a bit younger than me (and many of us) and are able to go, go, go. Enjoy RT.

Diane Burton said...

Rolynn, what a great idea. Finding what part of the day makes you happiest. For me, it's mornings--after the grogginess wears off. LOL We need that good stuff in our lives. I hope you share your thoughts on that with us some day.

Diane Burton said...

Andrea, glad I could help.

Diane Burton said...

Alison, I know you're anxious to get that book published. I would be, too. Just remember to take care of yourself.

RE Mullins said...

Great advice.