A few weeks ago, I experienced a first for this semester: a weekend with nothing scheduled. That’s right, there was nothing on my calendar, no events, no dinners, no meetings and no traveling. I had almost forgotten what it felt like to go to bed at the time I wanted on a Friday night without setting an alarm for an early Saturday morning. I had a chance to rest for a weekend, truly rest. What a novel concept.
I loved my free weekend, but I also felt awkward. Could I really stay in my pajamas all day on Saturday? Was it true that I really did not have to go anywhere? What do people do when there are no events on the calendar? I adjusted pretty quickly. The biggest success of my free weekend was finally watching the rest of Veronica Mars, plus reminding myself that reading a book that is not required reading for a class is actually pretty nice.
Looking back on this exciting first for the semester caused a little bit of concern. When did resting, taking the time to sit and remind myself that there is a life outside of event-planning, homework and meetings become so foreign? I am willing to bet that I am not the only person who feels this way.
The event page on my Facebook is filled with Maryville College events, events that students plan, advertise and host. MC is filled with students who are passionate about different projects, and that passion leads to being committed to projects, events and meetings. The problem is that it is so easy to become overcommitted, to feel like it is impossible to say no.
But what good are we if we forget how to rest? How useful are we to the causes that we are passionate about if we are so burned out that the idea of planning one more event or making one more banner is overwhelming and yields anxiety? The answer is simple. We are not useful to our passions if we lose ourselves in the process. Taking time for yourself and actually resting? It is important, even necessary. Observing the sabbath is even commanded of you.
Your passions deserve the best you that you can give them. But being the best you requires you to take care of yourself. You deserve it. Your sanity is so much more important than that one last banner or the MC Today announcement you forgot to put in. Take the time that you need to recover after the weeks that seem never-ending. Take the time to rest, to do sabbath as it should be done.
You deserve nothing less than the very best care, a concept that sometimes feels selfish. But would you not say the same thing to someone else? You are no less worthy of rest than your exhausted friend. Take care of yourself and rest. Take the time to breathe and find the peace that lies somewhere underneath the anxiety that the stresses of the semester can cause.