I was listening to episode 71 of the Happier in Hollywood podcast today and they beautifully described the situation I find myself in this past week.
It turns out that I’m on an Obligation Vacation.
To be fair, I rather think I’m in the midst of it’s darker cousin, the Obligation Rebellion.
It’s been a long year in the Oh Waily household and there are still three months to go! Unfortunately I seem to have finally found that point where tiredness, personal expectations, external obligations and reality have all collided and resulted in a mass gathering of tweety birds circling my head.
Truth be told I’m kind of like the human equivalent of Wile E. Coyote at the moment; lots of grand plans that have ended in me hitting the dust. Repeatedly. And it isn’t pretty.
Unlike Wile E., who displays persistent-to-the-point-of-painful-optimism, I have the ability to tell when reality is saying enough is enough and the time has come to stop ordering things from Acme Corporation.
For me that time arrived this past week when my brain finally decided, all on it’s subconscious own, to take me on a surprise Obligation Vacation. I had no idea where we were going and that such a detour might even have a name, until tonight; but I like it. It suggests a positive outlook and a healthy response to maintaining a balance between obligations and your own sanity. And it’s definitely more upbeat than Obligation Rebellion which is, truthfully, what overcame me.
For close on a week now I have looked at my rather huge list of obligations and other people’s expectations and have thought, “Nah. Not today. I think I will stare at that blank wall for a while.”
My rebellious, wall watching holiday has absolutely nothing to do with those folk patiently waiting for me to email, phone, organise or otherwise contribute. It has everything to do with my tightrope walking act of balancing everyone’s needs, especially my own. Just like Wile E. Coyote I started out looking and feeling like I’ve got it all under control and then…
Here I am, on my impromptu
And it’s a bittersweet one. I dislike seeming to be disorganised, rude, uncooperative or otherwise “just not getting the job done”. It goes strongly against the grain. But, oh the freedom from doing the drudgery !! I could almost slip in to not Adulting as a full time gig, if it were not for the fact that I am often the only adult in the house.
And that raises the issue of the end of my Obligation Vacation. There has been another adult in the house during my rebellious vacation – in case you were concerned – but that is soon to change again for a few weeks. I suspect that my sly and cunning subconscious took the opportunity of another adult being around to sneak in a much needed rest.
Well done Brain, well done. But next time a bit of warning would be good, or pre-planning at the very least. I’m not big on unwelcome surprises, as you really ought to know.
That leaves me with the question of how to work Obligation Vacations in to my life rather than have my brain spring them upon me. It’s one that I will have to take time to ponder. For now I will remain, mostly, on Vacation.
At least until Mr Oh Waily’s next trip away.
Each person deserves a day away in which no problems are confronted, no solutions searched for. Each of us needs to withdraw from the cares which will not withdraw from us.
― Maya Angelou