I have done a remarkably poor job of taking care of myself lately. I do love my job immensely and sometimes that means that I let the boundaries of "yarn-fun" and relaxation get a little blurry. But eventually even I remember that I can't work all the time. It is so easy to get lost in the endless lists and to imagine that every darn thing on those lists is important. But they're not.
We know what is important if we stop and listen. We know that spending time with our loved ones and watching the hummingbirds are things we should do every day. But our culture encourages being constantly "on". And it isn't okay.
So yesterday afternoon I went for a hike.
It is spring. The snow is melting and the water is very high in all the streams and rivers. This creek may well be dry in a few months. But yesterday, it was roaring along. I managed to find logs for some shaky crossings for the first three, but then it was clear that my feet were going to get wet. Never mind. Great time to test my Brooks Cascadias for wet-foot long-distance hiking, right? I mean, if I do the PCT there are going to be days when my feet are wet all the time. So on stream crossing number four (of 26!!), I walked right through. Nothing could possibly feel better.
I saw a mule train doing trail work.
And I saw this guy. Walked within a foot of him, jumped a bit, then thought, "Hey, that is just a bull snake." Used the zoom on my camera to take some photos. Now, after reviewing the close-ups and consulting with my on-staff herpetologist, I'm not so sure that it was a bull snake after all. I'm glad we didn't sit down for tea.
I suppose the real question is, how do we let ourselves get so overwhelmed that we can't take an afternoon to go for a hike? Do you do this to yourself too? I'd like to think I'm not the only one who gets stuck in a loop of overwork. I think it becomes a point of pride and that is just wrong. Health is important and precious and can disappear quicker than we realize.
I feel worlds better today. Six miles, some wet shoes, and a beautiful day go a long way toward creativity and rejuvenation. I think I'll go back this weekend.
Take care of yourself. Maybe you should go for a hike too.
Or to the yarn store. There is always that.