On Your Mark, Get Set… Unwind!

And…my vacation starts today!  Whew.  This year was a tough one. I’ll save my reflections for later, but just the fact I haven’t posted in this space for several months gives an indication of where my head has been. (Yep, buried.) But I’m coming up for some sunshine and air and couldn’t be happier. My challenge is getting to that place of rest where my body and mind can rejuvenate.

Photo Credit: 8slowdowns Flickr via Compfight cc

Sherri Spelic, who writes thoughtfully about her experiences as an educator in Austria, recently shared a poem that resonated with me: “A Few Words About the End”. It captures the feeling that so many of us experience just as school ends for the big summer break.

It can hard for me to reach the release into independence that Sherri talks about.  I am so wound up after an intense school year that I feel more of a gradual loosening. It happens viscerally, day by day and little by little until..there it is. I’ve found that three things help move that process along.

  1. Time outside: I sit outside on our back deck. I run along the green shaded trail. I swim in Lake Ontario (or any other handy body of water, pools included!).  I breathe in, breathe out and feel the spring uncoiling inside.
  2. Reading paper books: I hold the book, my hands stretch the cover, and my fingers grasp the page to turn it. Somehow, these physical sensations enable more sustained attention. I see my progress through the book. I sometimes take a pen or highlighter to make a note.
  3. A change in location: Leaving home for a few days helps my brain detach from work and the responsibilities that go with it. I rest. I walk. I realize that there is so much more than my little corner of the world. I feel more free.

It’s time to start.


7 Responses to “On Your Mark, Get Set… Unwind!”

  1. Sherri Spelic Avatar
    Sherri Spelic

    Welcome to the summer of your independence, Sue! Honored that my words were a help. All the points you make here resonate fully. We’ve just returned from a week long vacation that included plenty of fresh air, cool water, paper books and quiet time. I feel like a new person. Enjoy your gradual unwinding and if you’re looking for a great read consider Carla Shalaby’s Troublemakers. Education related but relatable and restorative.

    1. Thanks for the book suggestion! Always looking for new ones. I’ll share one back – have you read “The Power” by Naomi Alderman?

  2. Enjoy a well-deserved break, Sue! I think there are some nuggets of wisdom that we can all gain from this on how to relax. Even with gearing up for my summer camp position, I’ve learned something from you about the need to take a break, and I took a full week (and then some) to truly unwind. Thanks for teaching me about the importance of doing this!


    1. Thanks for taking the time to comment, Aviva. Isn’t summer wonderful? Happy reading!!!

      1. Thanks Sue! Totally loving the opportunity to do some uninterrupted reading. Hope you’ll share some of the books you read too. I always like suggestions!


  3. Enjoy a well-deserved and re-energizing holiday! 🙂

    1. Thanks, Brenda! Just into my first paper book of the summer and it couldn’t feel better!

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