Over the past two weeks my schedule has dwindled down to my full time job and planning Widow Voyages trips. That’s it. As workshops have ended and I’ve come into a nice groove of carving out time for self care, down time, and reading. It’s been truly wonderful. I forgot about the days when I used go to my part time job and spend the off time writing, reading, and processing my grief. I allowed time for me.
I’m not sure how my days filled up so much in the following years, but it’s in my nature and part of what I feel is normal. Yet this quiet time, an hour nearly every evening in the whirlpool tub reading a book and drinking a hard root beer, or taking a walk with the pooches, going to bed early, and time sitting in front of the tv enjoying another nature documentary with my husband, it’s all so precious and wonderful and something I want to continue.
My body is telling me REST, TAKE TIME, as in the span of the past 2 weeks I’ve managed to sprain my left ankle, injure my right ankle, and get a summer cold. My body knows it needs a break from the stress I’ve been under. The self induced stress.
Yet still I continue to send out inquiry emails wondering if I’ve been accepted into several speaking engagements for which I have applied. I wonder if they want to hear what I have to say. It’s always calling me.
I’m nearly at the end of reading The Element by Sir Ken Robinson, a gift from a widow friend who knew I needed to read it as I guide myself through these next steps of career exploration. Last evening I read this:
In the “Pro-AM” Revolution,” a report for the British think tank Demos, Charles Leadbeater and Paul Miller underline the rise of a type of amateur that works at increasingly higher standards and generates breakthroughs sometimes greater than those made by professionals – hence the term Pro-Am.
As he wrote about people who pursue their Pro-Am Element he mentioned that they find time beyond their full time jobs to pursue their passions even if they know it won’t make them money or if they can’t pursue it full time. “That’s me,” I felt myself yelling internally. I’ve been dreaming about the big break for years – that I’d write the book and win awards (which I did) and sales would boom (it didn’t) – I’d give speaking engagements people would love (they do) and hundreds show up (they don’t) – that I’ll launch this business and trips will sell out (they aren’t…yet) and that the company will grow to a point where I have to hire people (maybe someday). I’m always waiting, hoping, wondering. But until that time it’s all pursued beyond my 9-5. Beyond the job that allows me to pay the bills and funds my Pro-Am gigs.
It’s a want for something more that makes me pursue these ventures. It’s a desire to stay active in my passions, in my Element, hoping that one day the big break might happen, but that if it never does, I’ve at least enjoyed my time working towards new opportunities.
Yet for now I want to embrace the rest. The down time. I want to carve out time for meditation, to allow my mind to grow and expand. I want to dedicate time to my husband and family. I want to allow time and space for creativity to flow back in to keep me fueled for the roads ahead.