Taking a break from something is supposed to be good for you. It is supposed to recharge your batteries, refill your tank, refresh, renew, invigorate.
But oh, what a lie. Taking a break from so many things only leads to despair. Delay. Procrastination. What began as a little treading water in the middle of the pool turns into Dead Man’s Float in the ocean, and then…sinking. Your clothes are wet, pulling you down deeper and deeper. The water is cold. You should just start swimming again – look, the shore isn’t that far – but now you’ve lost momentum and just lifting your arm to paddle one stroke feels insurmountable.
Sometimes your break is imposed by your life: your kids are out of school, a grandmother is sick, your boss makes demands.
But often your break is just you stumbling over the daily slog of your life and wanting some “freedom.” And that little voice in your head says, “Go ahead, you just need a little break. You’ll be refreshed, renewed, restored after (x) minutes.”
Next thing you know, you’re over your head in the Pacific and sharks are sizing you up for their own little break time.
Why this miserable screed on taking breaks? My kids went back to school – early, precisely because many schools recognize how long breaks can break too much – and I’m trying to finish my next book (The Supermodel’s Best Friend) and keep this blog updated with its progress. Soon my brilliant and charming but confused heroes will get their deserved HEA, but I made the mistake of pausing just as Lucy and Miles most needed me to press on at full speed.
Exercise regimes are like this too. Diets. Gardening. (Oh, crap, let’s not even talk about my front yard. The weeds have weeds. I’m an organic cottage-gardener in a tidy suburb and when I stop maintaining the wild array of nature in my little plot out front…well, it shows.)
You can’t keep up with everything, but as soon as you take a break from one thing, it’s funny how the rest of it follows along and you end up doing nothing. Like that adage about asking a busy man for help if you want to get something done.
So with the help of some new full-strength Chai and a bowl of sugar-free low-carb jello, I’m swimming to shore to help Lucy and Miles find out why they’re so damn perfect for each other. I’ll be blogging more, too. Wet clothes and sharks and all.
*Photo attribution: Peter Church [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons