You know that moment when you’ve finally settled in to catch your favorite television program? I mean the drudgery is all taken care of…dishes, laundry, dog fed, lunches are packed and ready for consumption tomorrow. Right. That moment. After everyone is bathed, prayed, and tucked in. That moment when you grab your cup of tea and a small treat from the snack basket. When you finally settle into YOUR spot on the couch or YOUR chair. Yes. This is what I’m talking about. You get all settled in, turn on the tv, cue up your dvr, and set your mind for a small dose of mindless entertainment.
You with me so far?
Can you picture the moment?
You’re right there, completely comfortable and it’s quiet and no one needs anything from you so it’s just you and your show.
And just as your show comes on, right after the review from the previous show and they start to set the stage for what’s going to happen…your eyes close.
You didn’t want them to close.
You weren’t trying to go to sleep!
But bam right there…right then…your eyes close, your head nods, and that is all she wrote!
See I live in that moment. That brink of sleep moment. There are times when I pull out my phone to take pictures of what’s happening no so much because I think my kid is that cute but because I’m on the edge of missing it…because I’m that tired…and I need a witness to my life. I need proof that this actually happened.
See that’s what Facebook is for me. It’s my witness. I get so busy with the everything of my life that I don’t have a chance to experience my life in real time. It’s frustrating. Actually it’s beyond frustrating! It’s potato chip induced coma or I’ m going to pop a gasket angry monster making.
I hate missing life.
I hate it when something is going on that’s important to someone I love and I miss it because I was just too damn tired!
I hate missing out on opportunities to improve my community or stand in support of an organization that’s actually doing the right thing because the drudgery has become the main event.
I don’t want to miss a millionth moms marching to incite changes in child access laws because my dryer broke and my kid won’t have dry underwear!
I know that missing life and missing and television show aren’t the same thing. I get that but when I can’t stay awake for a damn tv show I know there no chance of me being completely available for “Science Night.”
Remember the time I feel asleep in that meeting and got called out by that presenter? Well shit like that happens to me…all the time.
I’m constantly trying to feign awakened by using my electronic devices as props. Dinner out with friends, let me take a picture and post it. Never mind that anyone who’d be interested in who I had dinner with are most likely the very people that I’m actually eating dinner with! Just give me something to do so I don’t fall face forward into my blackened chicken salad with corn fritter crumbles!
I want to do better about this. I need to do better. The primary prescription for this ongoing sleep deprivation is ‘authentic rest.’
Authentic rest is something Michael Bernard Beckwith defines in “Spiritual Liberation: Fulfilling Your Soul’s Potential.”
Beckwith writes: The truth is that constant entertainment permits us to escape from ourselves and keeps us from having to come face to face with the painful, messier aspects of our life. It also keeps us from being receptive to insights that would be the impetus for our growth and creativity.
Authentic rest is power.
I need that power in my life…for my life. The constant motion and output wears me down. Burns me out.
So the question is how might I redesign my life priorities so that authentic rest is placed as an essential?
How might I live fully in each moment completely present and energized without the constant pull of ‘what else do I need to do?’
Big questions…but this is a big life.