Friday, September 30, 2011

The Need for a Break (Every Day)

I really pushed myself physically during the move prep. It was an emotional time full of strees. Thus body and mind were overloaded. Then there was the move and then the unpacking followed immediately by sports team start-up and Boy Scout joining and homeschooling academics beginning.

There was so much to do that there was no shutting off. I was not allowing myself much of a break from anything. Peeks at Facebook and Twitter done in between homeschool lessons are not the same as shutting off. I was barely watching TV so there was no escape from that. My book reading increased mainly because now I had no TV in the master bedoom so would unwind and escape into fiction stories.

I can be an intense person. To be intense all day, every day, without a real break does bad things to me. My attitude gets bad. I can be miserable to be around. I start to resent things and my anger builds, then needs an outlet. I seldom snap but God help you if you are the one to push my buttons at the wrong moment.

It is not a crime to want a diversion like time to knit, or read something that does not upset or drain a person (as the news does to me or as some nonfiction books do). It is not bad to indulge in some silly TV instead of using every viewing minute to catch up with the news or to learn factual educational or enlightening information.

Not only did I need to start having some more fun and doing some things to get my brain to slow down and to unwind I needed parameters and limits around my day. I can't be "on duty" watching over homeschool lessons from before breakfast to dinner time then juggle night appointments for the kids then cram laundry or house cleaning in right up to and past a reasonable bedtime.

If feeling stress is bad for an adult, it must be bad for kids too. Running kids ragged pushing them all day with nonstop classes and other appointments is not good, it doesn't create a healthy mind. This makes good common sense but so many parents (me included sometimes) put this aside in order to strive and push academics on our kids, or to push other "good pursuits".

I am shortening our homeschool day so we all can know that there is an end in sight and that we will have a mental break at X time of the day. 

As of this week I am increasing my fluff TV viewing time. I am going to continue reading fiction for pleasure instead of mostly reading nonfiction to learn from. I am going to pick a knitting project and start in on it (it has been way too long since I've last knitted). I also am going to keep teaching myself to cook new Vietnamese dishes.

I am not going to apologize for pursuing these activities or diversions as some may call them. If you want to look down upon me for watching Millionaire Matchmaker or one of the Real Housewives series then go right ahead because I'm doing what I want to do and am not looking for anyone's approval. I'm not committing a crime, I'm just watching some reality TV for goodness sake. Give me a break.


KC said...

I enjoyed this post. I frequently tell people I don't parent after 8pm. The reactions I get range from "I totally understand" to "What!? How could you?" Mommy alone time is important to my sanity and my kids are parented better for it. Luckily, I have a great husband who does the bedtime routine and if the kids aren't upstairs by 8pm (7:45 is better), then I start to get a little twitchy. :) And, it's not like I don't spend ALL DAY with them, homeschooling and interacting. It's good for them to get some one on one time with dad. Enjoy your fluffy tv! (Castle and Dancing with the Stars are my favorites, and we've been going through old episodes of Star Trek, TNG on Netflix. I LOVE Netflix.)

Xa Lynn said...

I'm not looking down on you. I'm wanting to join you! (Though my trash tv time runs to Survivorman and Japanese anime). LOL.

My goal is to read a silly steampunk novel on my Kindle, and the Sisters Grimm (book 1), this week, for fun.

Xa Lynn