Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Breaks Can Be Blessings

 After I post this week, I will be headed for the beach! Hallelujah! 

For weeks now, some friends of mine and I have been planning a 4-Day writer’s retreat at Ocean Lakes in Myrtle Beach, SC. What a blessing! It has been a while since I have been off so I am excited to say the least. I have lofty plans for things I want to get accomplished.  In reality, I may not write much more then in the sand on my walks down the beach. My main goal is to rest mentally and be refreshed emotionally without the worries of a busy schedule. Beach walks have always done wonders for me.

These days it is seems much easier to go somewhere when the opportunity calls. However, just a few short years ago, I had little ones at my feet all the time and getting away for even 5 minutes was tough. I chose to be a stay at home mom while my children were very young. Although I love it, each day I found myself longing for a few moments where no demands were made on my time or my mind.

When my two children were past the point of naps, I would get a few moments when I marched them into their separate rooms and recited the rules:

“You have to stay in your room for the next hour. You don’t have to go to sleep but you do have to doing something that doesn’t create a lot of noise. No bathroom breaks so go now! I will tell you when you can come out.”

Maintaining the routine was a little tricky until they learned that what Mom said was going to be the law in the land. After they got into the habit though, it was not so difficult as they became accustom to entertaining themselves for the duration. Plus, periodically, I tried to reward their good behavior with something they enjoyed.

As my two children got older, I went back to working outside the home. At that point, it was not uncommon for me to fall into the recliner after work for a few minutes of peace and quiet. Since, the children were older, I would only have to announce my instructions down the hallway:

 “You better be dead or dying to bother me for the next 15 minutes.”

That was my signal to them I had had enough for the moment. They learned quickly that life went better for them, if they complied and gave me those few moments alone.

What I am trying to say here is…we all need time for ourselves during our day no matter where we are or what stage of life we are in. Sometimes, especially with children, we have to be ‘very creative’ in order to find a few moments to call our own. Each family has their own schedule of activities to work around. However, when we make time to rest our minds and refresh our emotions, we become better equipped to handle the rest of our day.

Can you bless yourself with a break today? Are there moments you could set aside to rest your mind and refresh your emotions? Think about it. If you can, try to set aside a few minutes each day or at least each week just for you. What a difference it can make in the productivity of your life. 


  1. We just got back from a 10 day vacation in northern CA. It was a very needed break after a summer that was too busy. I may be retired, but I still need a weekly break for an hour or two...time for reflection and writing.

    1. Retired from one thing to pursue another is probably a more accurate evaluation...lol! I bet northern CA is beautiful to rest.

  2. Loved your post, Mary Jane. I must have a quiet time with the Lord in the morning with my coffee. My family knows this and it's not wise to interrupt it. At other times it may be noisy moments with the Lord present. :)
    A quiet walk ANYWHERE always does me good too.

    1. So much of the time we go and go and go until we have no more to give before we seek some quiet. I have learned life is better when I treat myself to some time alone with Him or a break to call my own.