Forced down time

Saturday evening I started feeling ill. I even got a nasty case of chills which lasted most of a sleepless night. It turned out to be a “stomach bug,” which I still have. The chills went away, but the rest of my symptoms have not.

Yesterday, other than going to church, I did nothing. Today, I’ve done next to nothing. I never do nothing or even next to nothing. I’m always doing something even when I’ve promised myself I would do nothing.

I have enjoyed this summer, but summer has so far involved a series of projects around the home. Even though my wife and I aren’t traveling anywhere this summer, I’ve taken no time off. Honestly, I don’t mind not going anywhere. We’ve taken at least one vacation a year for many years, and we even went to the Smoky Mountains back in April as sort of an early vacation. It actually feels good to not be going anywhere. We’ll take vacations again in the future, just not this summer.

If you own a home, you know there’s aways something to do. There’s never a time when you can honestly tell yourself you’ve done all that can be done. And that’s how it is with me. I’ve tried to be mindful to give myself one day a week of doing nothing, but it often doesn’t quite work out. I’ll pile up chores on one day so the next day can be a free day, but then I often find things to do on my free day.

So I went to church yesterday morning. I figured I could feel like crap at home or feel like crap at church. I have a volunteer position at church I enjoy. I operate a video camera. Fortunately, I’m isolated sitting atop my camera platform, so I don’t breathe germs on anyone. I figured it was safe. Then I came home and did nothing.

I watched part of a baseball game last evening, then shut my eyes before it was completely dark. I slept much better last night. I’ve slept some today. I’ve done a little reading. I listened to part of the Rush Limbaugh Show. I’ve ignored the clock for the most part. I still have the occasional stomach cramp. My appetite is almost non-existent (not the worst thing that could happen to me).

Today I called in sick for the first time this year. I’ve been blessed with good health these last several months. I don’t enjoy being ill. I guess no one does. But I’m not one to complain. I figure it will just have to run its course. It sure is taking its time. My running is on hiatus. I haven’t run since Friday, and don’t know when I’ll run again. I may not get in my requisite 50 miles this month. Oh well. It’s not the worst thing, either.

I don’t know if my illness was due in part to fatigue or something I ate or something I breathed or something else. I do know that your body sometimes has a way of forcing itself into a period of “down time.” Normally, I would not sit around and do nothing, even though doing nothing isn’t a bad thing. We don’t always have to be “productive.” There’s a reason God gave us the Sabbath and commanded us to do no work one day a week. I do honestly try to be mindful of that, but sometimes the Sabbath slips away from me. I guess I have only myself to blame.


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