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  • Writer's pictureTina

Taking A Break

Life on the farm often settles into a mundane routine from which cannot be deterred. Goat's still need to be milked at 5:30 a.m. Baby goats require feeding every few hours. Pigs, chickens, geese, cats, and dogs expect their stewards to stay on schedule and meet their needs. They don't care that the temperatures are below freezing. If anything, the cold makes the task of meeting their demands even more critical. My bean has cyber school, and those tasks need to be completed and the emphasis of the importance of education fully enforced. Although we work from home, I believe we have more responsibility and work harder than ever before. We often feel as though one day just blends into the next. There is no reprieve, no break, no vacation in sight. Sometimes, that feels heavy and disheartening.

Yesterday, the area's local school districts were closed due to inclimate weather. With Jordan's newly developed case of the blues, I made an executive decision and canceled cyber school for the day. Will she be behind? Yes. Is a mental health day more important than four hours of school work? Definitely, yes. It was a welcome reprieve from the steady grind of everyday life. She pulled out her snow gear, armed herself with shovels, and proceeded to build an epic snow fort that took almost the entire day to complete. This fort had multiple entrances, a slide, and a living room to house a camp chair. It was really cool. The best part, she smiled the entire day. A day of fresh, cold air, physical activity, and time to just be a kid was precisely what the doctor ordered.

I find that in my downtime, I sit and virtually visit England. I have even started a fantasy trip itinerary. How sad is that? It is at the top of my bucket list to take Jordan to England for a summer. In my fantasy trip, I would rent a thatched cottage in a central location to immerse us into the local culture and take day trips to see everything from Stonehenge, the white horses, and Shakespeare's birthplace to manor houses, castles, and hikes through the moors. We would spend a summer driving on the wrong side of the road in the countryside, eating in pubs, and having afternoon tea, all the while taking in a lifetime of literary history. It's such a lovely fantasy. Alas, it will probably stay a mere fantasy. I would be guilt-ridden leaving The Bibbed Wonder home to hold down the fort...he has no desire to leave the farm, and I couldn't leave the soap. It's a lovely fantasy to have, though, don't you agree?

The point I am trying to make in a wordy, roundabout way is that it is essential to give ourselves a mental break. A long, lavish vacation would be nice but especially now with Covid; it just isn't possible. However, we can take a snow day, research interesting places, fantasize about adventure, and look forward to the day when our travels aren't just a whimsical idea. For now, play in the snow, walk in the woods or fields, read a good book to escape the monotony, or whatever helps you to feel relaxed and hopeful. Taking a mental health day is just as important as work, school, or responsibilities. For your well-being, give yourself a break.

As always, dear reader, stay safe, stay smart, take a break, and keep washing your hands.

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