Friday, February 11, 2005

Rest

I haven't been feeling myself of late. I can't quite pinpoint why. Mostly, I don't feel rested. My mind won't let me rest.

Just this afternoon I tried to nap, something I very rarely do and keep telling myself I should do more often. Sleep would not come. Sometimes it's enough just to close one's eyes for a few minutes. Not today.

One night this week I vowed to get to bed at a decent hour, and I in fact enjoyed a full 7 hours of sleep before Helena woke at 5 in the morning. The problem is, having tasted that little bit of heaven, I know now what I'm missing, and I want so much more.

I've been trying to discipline myself to work efficiently and productively within set hours, with definable goals. Limit my distractions. I told myself no blogging, and no books to read either. The plan is backfiring.

I haven't read a book (or any part thereof) — apart from Jamberry and Bootsie Barker Bites — in a week. I've set reading up as reward for completing work. In addition, I've limited that reward to Don Quixote.

I've enjoyed every word I've read so far, but the hardcover Grossman translation is effing huge. Were it not this brick, I would have broken my reward rule a thousand times over, sneaking it into the bathroom for a page or two a couple times a day, finishing out a chapter while hovering in the kitchen waiting for water to boil, even letting it rest in my lap so I could thumb ahead between work bits just to see what lay in store for me at the next tea or bathroom break. I know myself to this extent. I really would have.

(Why it is that the DQ above any other reading matter rule takes precedence over the reward rule, I do not know. It just does.)

But it's a fucking brick. The reading of it is an event. It requires a certain posture, with full support. Setting up the context for it requires so much time and energy in itself, which I'm having trouble generating.

Too, I've been blogging less (did you notice?). Because all that time I spend sitting in front of a computer blogging could be channeled into my work. I've spent many hours this week, fingers poised on the keyboard, simply staring at this screen. Staring.

I did finally start staring at other blogs, just to break the monotony. Perhaps I'm hanging out in all the wrong places. They're making me angry (this, of course, is exacerbated by not being fully rested).

[The biggest change I've noticed in myself since becoming a mother is that I'm more ready to take a stance, voice an opinion. It's not just because there's a child to protect in a stupid-one-day,-evil-the-next world. Not just because she's the Reason for and Meaning of everything now. Not just taking on adult responsibility. It's something to do with my growing up, growing into myself. Everything's in sharper focus now.

Anyway, I find myself wondering where and how to direct this strength, this resolve. Il blogamundi is rife with petty squabbles, but I've also tired of the can't-we-be-reasonable, can't-we-all-just-get-along chatter. I'm at a silly and tiresome cocktail party, when I'd rather be at the afterparty, when only a few people are left and someone brings out the good bottle they've been saving for between friends and someone else switches the music over to dark and brooding jazz, and we're tired but comfortable, not afraid to talk about religion and politics, life and love, cuz these are fundamental things — what it's all made of.

The personal is political, dammit. It's starting to anger me, and for this reason I don't feel rested. Maybe it will stir me to action. More on this (probably) in days to come.]

As of this moment, I am lifting the restrictions on myself, cuz they just ain't working for me. The books and the blogs keep my brain oiled and running smoothly. The book offers an escape, the blog offers a dumping ground — both help keep my mind organized and rested.

2 comments:

Diana said...

Yes, I had noticed, btw. ;)

I'm so glad you broke through and expressed all this. I feel the same away about blogging keeping my brain oiled, and also about DQ being a fucking brick!

Oddly, I wouldn't say that I really enjoyed DQ in the process of reading it. After I was done, I found myself a little in love with the guy, but I think there was just too much fear that I wouldn't finish for me to relax and enjoy. It was like having started a marathon knowing I'd never run more than a 10K before.

I find that interesting, though, how good a motivator fear was for me. I might have to use this somehow.

Hope you feel better and get some good rest, Isabella.

GaelicGrl said...

I love the way in which you articulate your vision of il blog. and I find myself, too, angry re: blogs increasingly.

I'm also sleep deprived, as you are. My stamina, I'm happy to report, is getting better since we last spoke.