It's 10:20 on a Friday morning, early summer, 68 degrees and sunny out--simply gorgeous here in the heartland--and I'm still in my pjs. This, my friends, is work for me. I am having to relearn how to, um, RELAX and take the time to smell. No shower first thing today. Slowly drinking my coffee, watching Belly watch the squirrels in the back yard, and blogging about my efforts to be nicer to myself.
When I was back in Syracuse in May, I stayed with Jen and Michael and the kitties, and on Saturday morning, with no dog to be responsible for, I sat around until at least one o'clock watching The L Word
before I finally took a shower and did something productive. This experience was alien to me. First, watching TV on a Saturday
seemed like a sacrilege when the sun was shining outside, and second, I had no responsibilities
. No dog to walk, no papers to read, no classes to plan. Jen and Michael must've thought I was a nutbrain for commenting on how weird it all felt, because clearly they know how to relax. I envy them that.
It's not the why
of this that's difficult to understand: if I didn't plan everything as well as I did in grad school, I wouldn't be here today. There, a constant work ethic was rewarded and encouraged. And of course it began long before I got to Syracuse--this is why it's so hard to break. It's the how
now that I'm trying to figure out. How to undo the programming that tells me that if I'm not doing something productive--on a weekday
, no less--then I'm wasting time and I'll never get anything published and I'll never get tenure and I'll wilt away and die. How to allow myself to sit and smell and watch the Belle (and laugh at my silly rhyme). One thing's for sure: if I didn't have this dog to keep me grounded in the now, I most certainly would wilt away and die.
Be. here. now. Relax.