If you regularly read this blog, you know I’ve been out of town for two weeks.  That’s a record for me for being away.  It was a bit scary at first, leaving all of my “duties” back home in the Midwest, but the trip was wonderful and beautiful and amazing.

Here’s what we all need during the exhausting stressful time of divorce:

1.  Rest

2.  Refreshment

3.  Rejeuvenation

For me to really rest, I have to leave my house.  At my house there are too many things calling my name that need my attention.  Too many projects to be done.  Too much guilt.  Even though our trip to Wyoming is always lots of work, it’s work like setting up camp and pumping water and chopping wood and hiking a steep trail or fishing for supper.  It’s work outside in the fresh air.  So rest doesn’t necessarily mean inaction. Rest can be physical work that makes you tired and helps you sleep better.

I also need to be able to be “unreachable” except for the direst emergencies.  I need a change of scenery and personally, the best scenery for me to feel refreshed is nature.  Even if it’s a beautiful park, or a garden, or a walking path through the woods at the edge of a subdivision.  I need a place I can see trees and wildflowers and breathe fresh air and hear the birds.

And my favorite kind of refreshment is being able to spend unstructured time with people I care about.  I can talk to a grandchild while we’re sitting around the campfire.  I can share the camaraderie of children/grandchildren around a lake catching a boatload of fish (19!) in one morning and then helping them clean them (our family rule is you clean what you catch!) and then later in the week frying them up in a big huge skillet and (even the young ones eating an eyeball!).  It’s being able to talk about important things and silly things as you walk along the trail.

Finally, there is the sense of being rejeuvenated … having more control.  Going to bed when you feel like it.  Getting up early to fish or sleeping in and sitting on the deck with fresh-roasted coffee at the Mountain View Hotel which only has 8 rooms and is on the historic register.  The definition for rejuvenate is:  to restore to youthful vigor, appearance; to make fresh or new again; to uplift by removal of a barrier; to give new energy or strength.  All of those things can happen when we allow ourselves to get away from our normal environment especially with people we care about.

All those things can happen by ourselves, too or with one close friend or family member.  We can for an hour or for a morning or a day or a weekend turn off our cell phone and renting a room in a motel by a lake or simply taking a walk in the open air.   Striding or sauntering.  Pondering or daydreaming.  Just allowing our body and our mind to slow down and drink in the beauty of this world, unencumbered.  I know things everywhere in the world are in disarray.  And events in our own lives are crazy.  But we can each choose to find a place that we can rest and refresh and rejeuvenate.

Find a way to get away …. even in your own neighborhood.  We all need it.  And now more than ever.  Let me know what you decide to do to rest, refresh and rejeuvenate.

Here’s one of my favorite passages:
“The Lord is my shepherd.  I shall not want.  He makes me lie down in green pastures.  He leads me beside the still waters.  He restores my soul.”    Psalm 23     Let God do that for you today.