Nevertheless, there remaineth a rest for the people of God.
I took a nap this afternoon; in fact, I've taken a nap each day this week. This is something I used to do very rarely. The simple fact is, though, that I'm tired. Very tired.
This is not a recent thing. I used to complain to my doctor of exhaustion. I thought I had Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. He told me, "You go backpacking every year. You can't
have Chronic Fatigue." I replied, "Yeah, but I feel like crap all the rest of the year." The exhaustion has been worsening over the last three years.
rides my you-know-what constantly for my over-scheduling of myself. Somehow, though, her nagging doesn't come across as a concern for me, but for herself. The less of me there is to go around, the less there is for her to depend upon. So, even though I probably sound to her like I whine a lot, I'm actually holding back. The more she criticizes, the less inclined I am to share how I'm feeling. Which is all too typical for married couples, I suppose. The point is, I feel worse than I let on, most of the time.
All this came to a head recently, as I stepped on the scales yet again and was disgusted by what I read. I've gained a big amount of weight since summer. Not only that, but I find it increasingly difficult to take it off. And it occurred to me that my over-eating may be due to my tiredness. It's an old backpacker's trick -- also one used by those leading camps and tours (like me): up to a certain point, you can trade food for sleep. That is, cramming in food when you're tired perks you up. So, it stands to reason that if I ever actually got rested up, I might not eat so much. Likewise, long-term exhaustion might have conditioned my body to hold on to calories as a reservoir against the next major strength drain.
So, my resolve this spring is to take the naps I need to make up for both loss of night sleep and recuperation from leading programs. I also intend to take real days off. I realize that there are important things that may be impacted by my unavailability, but I'm never going to get well so long as I continue to drive myself as I have hitherto.
This is part of my spiritual disciplines for Lent.