Quotidian Mysteries

by Anna Blanch on June 22, 2012

Rest. Just do it.

The single most important piece of advice if I was talking to myself at PhD Day 1 would be to rest more.

To periodically take time off. To schedule it.

I haven’t done that. And I have suffered because of it. My writing has suffered because of it.

Having fun actually means that I write better.

I mentioned in This Morning is different that I had a few days off planned.

I just had 6 days completely off.

No electronics. No phone. No computer. No watch.

I admit I took a sneaky peak at my boyfriend’s Iphone and Ipad to look at a map, but that was it.

Instead I spent time with my best friend and her 3 month old baby girl, I flew to California, I slept, I cuddled and played with an 8 month old baby boy, I watched a couple of movies, I sat by the pool, I rode a beach cruiser to the frozen yoghurt shop and enjoyed northern Californian wine country and the people I was with.

It was exactly what I needed.

And then we drove to Southern California via Sequoia National park. The landscape was epic.

For the last week I have focused on the edits for the Introduction and chapter 1 of the thesis. There’s a ways to go.

For the first week in a long time I didn’t write for anything else. This blog, and all my other writing, lay fallow.

I let my brain ease back in. I waited till I had something to say: until I something I wanted to write about.

Instead I spent the week living the mystery of the quotidian – with my jaw still healing I’m not quite able to run yet — pieces of bone making their way out of your jaw is possibly one of the weirdest and most disconcerting things ever — and so with exercise out and the kitchen of the place where I’m staying being renovated, cleaning was my only outlet. Thus my writing was interspersed with laundry, clean floors, reorganised kitchen cupboards. It was a good thing indeed that my hosts are amenable to such intrusions.

“Laundry, liturgy and women’s work all serve to ground us in the world, and they need not grind us down. Our daily tasks, whether we perceive them as drudgery or essential, life-supporting work, do not define who we are as women or as human beings.” – Kathleen Norris.

Today though I am in Waco, Texas.

I am at Common Grounds. And I am writing.

In the last 36 hours I have spent time with some of my favourite people. It has been nourishing for my spirit.

I have laughed a lot. I have eaten Tex-mex, I have drunk a lot of water and reacquainted myself with the beverages of Texas, and I have enjoyed my friends.

My heart is full.

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  • http://amuseorbemused.com/ JT Adamson

    THAT is truly awesome.  I’ve been gone from writing for a little over a month, not resting, but stressing a bit because my step father is very ill.  Just posted a thing today for the first time….feels good to be back.
    Even though my break wasn’t fun, it was a break, and I’ll admit that even that is somewhat therapeutic. 

    • http://www.goannatree.com Anna Blanch

      I needed it more than I even knew!

  • Pingback: 2012 in review: posts of June — Goannatree()

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