Rest {n}:

20 Sep

Straight outta Webster’s…

Rest (n):

  1. a bodily state characterized by minimal functional and metabolic activities
  2. freedom from activity or labor
  3. peace of mind or spirit
  4. a rhythmic silence in music
  5. something used for support

-at rest: free of anxieties

Basic need or luxury? Metabolically, a basic need. In day-to-day life, sadly, a luxury.

For me, the act of rest is both. I need it- my mind, my body, my soul- to function at an efficient stratum. However, in the whirlwind that is my current existence (and probably yours too), rest is a rare luxury I am surprised to stumble upon. Did you know France has almost double the amount of paid vacation days per year than the U.S.? The French don’t get fat and they value rest. I’m booking a one-way ticket.

Like planes, trains, and automobiles, the body can only run on empty for so long. At some point, we must refuel_recharge_renourish.

When you stumble upon an opportunity for rest, it must be seized. And taken full advantage of. Sometimes we blink and let that window for rest slip away. Zoning out to Season 25 of American Idol (obviously not a fan of mindless television), obsessing over to-do lists, worrying about tomorrow.

Resting doesn’t just refer to the physical act of lying down and closing your eyes. Rest is about slowing the cadence. Being present. And turning your gaze inward. As the above definition variations say, it’s about allowing yourself freedom and peace. It’s about supporting yourself. And in a perfect world, rest would be a rhythmic silence- a repetitive piece of our overall rhythm.

This year of my life is shaping up to be a meticulously scheduled rhythm- a pattern that is repeated with slight variations every two weeks. And I think rest must be a steady part of that rhythm, for survival’s sake. I just wrapped up two weeks of studying diabetes, and after a weekend of much-needed rest, I’m heading off to an unconventional bakery where I will be for the next two weeks. Good things to come, my friends.

How I rest:

lavender bath salt, French music, yoga, reading.

Steaming veggies, boiling beans, stirring pots of ancient grains on a rainy Sunday; preparing for the week ahead.

Running in the rain.

I strive to someday be this skilled at the act of rest.

How do you rest?

Thanks for reading 🙂

{Van Gogh’s Noon: Rest From Work}

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