I have all the time in the world. Well, kind of. I’ve got just under two glorious weeks stretched out in front of me without a single plan. A blank diary, no entries apart from reminders of birthdays and a couple of tradie appointments to sort out the leaky shower.
When I started writing this article I had just under three weeks, but the last week has disappeared, *poof*, just-like-that. I’d floof my fingers around in the air to emphasise the point, if there was anyone here to watch.
And you know what? It feels just darn lovely. This is the first time in over four years of constant work and adventures where I’ve really had the time to just be. To not have to think about work next week, or have my brain self-guilting itself into going and doing something because I’ve only got a couple of days before being back at work.
It’s winter in New Zealand, and although there are still adventures to be had, I feel no desire to ‘make the most’ of this time. I’ve just moved into the Little Red Cottage, and I want to hibernate and nest. I’m going to spend each day doing whatever I feel the urge to do. Some days that’s been getting out into the bush, other days it’s been lighting the fire and reading one of the million books I’ve got lined up. I feel no guilt, just self-care salvation. I might do some writing, and I’ve got a couple of paid articles to get done, but I’m not rushing around looking for more. I probably should be, but meh. I can do that later. I need a rest.
Really, I needed this rest this time last year. I was heavily burnt out and stressed to the hilt. I’d sit in my counsellor’s office each week and tell her the same thing.
‘What do you think you need Tara?’ she’d say.
‘A couple of months off, ideally in a secluded cabin somewhere, where I don’t have to think about work, or visas, or pandemics. Where I can potter about, and spend each day doing basic things so my brain can chill the fuck out and remember the joy in life.’
‘Ah. Yes, bit tricky though that, isn’t it?’ she’d reply, knowing I couldn’t just quit my [new] job and take a few months off because my work visa didn’t allow me to be unemployed. ‘What do you think you can do instead?’ she’d say gently, and we’d work through my options to stop me going postal.
And so I worked through the burnout as best I could and feel way better now, but when I realised I could have some extended time off between jobs, you could bet your bottom dollar I sure as hell was going to take the opportunity. The break is still most welcome, and the fact I get to spend most of it going back to the UK is a huge billy bonus.
In the meantime, I might do some stuff soon.
Or, I might not.