Today, I took a break from the rat race. I threw off my metaphorical running shoes and paid no mind to the constant ticking of the clock. That’s the funny thing about leaving the rat race. Time continues to tick past, but each new minute doesn’t bring stress and a new sense of urgency. No, in the world outside the rat race, the ticking of the clock means sunrises, the warm sun hitting your face as you sit back with a cup of tea, and whistling songbirds. In this world, the simple things matter and they all happen the way God intended — when they’re supposed to.
About a week ago, my husband bet me ten dollars that I couldn’t keep today free of plans. He wasn’t hard up for money; he was determined to help me find some quiet time. For weeks — no months — I have been promising myself that I would keep a weekend free to do the things that I’m passionate about…all the while making an effort to have some quiet time. But every time a weekend approached, I would make plans and fill up the day as though it would disappear if I didn’t. It was fun, but it was exhausting. And I had no time for exercising, writing, or reading. (I used to make fun of people who couldn’t find time to read through a itty, bitty magazine. But here I was, with four unread magazines piling up beside my bed!).
So I accepted his challenge… This was going to be good for me!
This was also going to feel odd. I woke up to sunlight streaming through my window and couldn’t help but think, “Now what?” I didn’t have to rush through a shower and wolf down a bowl of cereal and half a banana. I had time! So to change up the order of things, I decided to put breakfast first. I toasted a bagel, spread on a nice layer of sunflower butter, and washed it down with a tall glass of lemon water. Before eating, I coached myself to take it slowly, because my first instinct was to swallow everything in two quick bites and then hurry on with my day. It would not have been a good idea because: #1. that would probably make me feel sick and #2. today was supposed to be about taking it slower!
I completely went against my usual, hectic-paced work ethic and — after breakfast — settled down to read a couple of magazines. As if that wasn’t taboo enough for a Saturday morning, I also had the Food network playing in the background. Television AND a magazine on a Saturday morning? How scandalous!?! I actually felt guilty for a few minutes… But then the Self magazine started to get really good (they have some amazing exercise routines to follow) and Rachel Ray was smiling at me as she made her steak sandwiches. So everything was all right. I mean, how can anything be wrong when Rachel Ray is smiling at you so happily?
My guilty relaxation aside, I pulled out my literal running shoes and went for a jog. I will admit that I had grand visions of this year’s first run, despite the fact that I’ve never run in 30 degree temperatures… in my life. It turned out to be quite painful (more on that during Monday night’s segment), but — in the end — the mile jog and mile walk did make me feel amazing… after the throbbing numbness wore off. 😉 Hey, it’s all about graduatlly getting back into the swing of things.
To cool down and unwind after the run, I made myself a cup of chocolate mint tea, courtesy of my mom who shared the new flavor with me. The tea was a*m*a*z*i*n*g! It’s like drinking a steamy, soothing up of peppermint patties. Not the best description because who drinks peppermint patties, but that’s the best I can do. It’s what peppermint patties would taste like if you drank them warm (minus the over-the-top-sweetness. It was just the perfect amount of mint and cocoa). I sat on the deck (literally, as our patio furniture is still in the works) 😉 and just soaked in some of the sunshine. The cats — who were in kitty heaven to be allowed outside for a bit — kept me company and watched in wide-eyed wonder as a squirrel darted through the branches around us. When Stitchy (my gray cat) started to lean a little too far over the railing, it was time to come in…
For the rest of the afternoon, I spent time working on my novel and trying to organize blog ideas. I love planning to a fault sometimes. So if I couldn’t plan my day, I could at least plan some future blog ideas. And it was great to work on the novel again. Oh, my characters, I have missed you so! When Nate came home and realized that I hadn’t made any crazy last-minute plans to spoil my day of rest and relaxation, he took me to get a Skinny Vanilla Late from Starbucks to celebrate. (Sarah, the decaf late’s taste as good as the regular ones by the way… Ha, ha. Inside joke). 🙂
While sipping our oh-so-yummy beverages, we browsed a local Blockbuster and found a used copy of My Sister’s Keeper. We’ll probably watch it tomorrow night, and I might cry during a movie for the first time. I hardly could handle the previews… But I hear it’s a must-see. Other than that, I spent the rest of the evening looking through cookbooks, writing a bit more, and watching a movie with the hubby.
Hmmm, leaving the rat race was so perfect and so very needed. I think I’ll stay off it for one more day. Monday will be here soon enough…