I spent this Independence Day weekend in Chicago and boy did I have a blast! The city is so beautiful and there are so many things to do. And coming from Georgia, it was nice to not have to choke on gusts of heat. But, this isn’t a travel blog so I don’t plan to delve into my trip (I’ll attach some pictures at the end). I want to focus more on what happened to me when I got back to Atlanta on Monday.
Being in such a lively city for such a short amount of time, it was easier to stay awake than to sleep–which is exactly what I did. Between Saturday morning and my Monday morning flight, I got maybe 3 hours of sleep. And I felt fine! I even made plans to see a friend Monday evening before heading back to Augusta. I was going to sleep on the plane and be A-OK. I fell asleep so fast I didn’t even feel the plane take off. By God’s grace I got home to Fayetteville fine, and settled around 1pm to take a 1-2 hour nap before getting my life together and heading out to see my friend. I woke up 5 hours later questioning who and where I was.
I tell this story to say that if you don’t give your body what it needs, it will take it–with a vengeance. I’m sure we all have stories of self-deprivation. For me, it happens most with sleep and self care (aka “me-time”). In the beginning, you feel fine, but as the days go on, your body starts getting upset. You’re more cranky, not as sharp, your focus is off. People usually fix this with coffee. But eventually you crash. It could be a willing crash, like shutting down Friday after an exam. Or it could be unplanned–you have a mental break down or you can’t study the day before an exam no matter how hard you try. Or you sleep through the plans you made like I did. Either way, it’s unhealthy to live on this kind of roller coaster.
In such a high stress field, recharging is a must. It’s so important. You can do this with good food, exercise, sleep, a movie night by yourself, etc. When I’m in school I schedule me-time the same way I schedule study time. Why? Because once you start depriving yourself, quite frankly your batteries begin to die. Recharging on a regular basis will keep you fresher/happier each day. But when we allow ourselves to get caught up, the time will come when our batteries die and we’re forced to recharge whether we like it or not.
By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. Genesis 2:2
A few pictures from Chi-town!