It seems ridiculous to make time to rest as we enter the holiday season, but I’m telling you—it’s time to make time to rest for Josh and me. Particularly Josh.
We just closed a defined season that was marked by stress. Therefore, it’s time to enter a marked season of rest. I’m not at liberty to share details on the stressful season, but trust me when I say we are beyond grateful it’s behind us. Yet, without a conscious effort to turn to rest, something or someone else will gladly fill our days with stress.
I’ve reflected lately on how much better I am at managing stress. Not perfectly by any means, but progressively better. Who knows exactly when my body started to turn on me as I internalized stress at the same time I was entering perimenopause….we moved here in 2016 without a friend in sight, we transitioned out of home schooling in 2018, my mom died in 2019, and then the nightmare of Covid in 2020 were probably all contributors. But when I reached out for help from a doctor and found lots of not-good things going on in my body, I realized much of the cause was my terrible stress management. I’ve learned what my body needed in the way of vitamins and Hormone Replacement. I’ve continued with moderate exercise and tried to make improvements in nutrition. And I’ve said no to a lot more than I ever have before. I’ve realized having two or three good friends is a gracious plenty. I’ve embraced times of boredom. I’ve walked more than ever in my life for the sheer enjoyment of being outside and with a grateful heart that I can move my body. I sleep at least seven hours…but manage eight many nights. I just don’t care about people’s opinions of me, how I use my time, or what they think of my family. I’m less and less guided by outside voices and that is a freeing place to be!
And in this season, I want Josh and I to draw some circles in our lives around those people and things that are the most important to us and learn to say no to most everything else. It’s time to rest.
So even as we enter the holiday season, maybe you could use this reminder as well. Is it time to re-evaluate your priorities? Set some boundaries? Learn to relax and laugh and sleep deeply? Don’t let the holiday season be another reason to put off taking care of yourself and your family. You can do it!