By Caitlin Kelly
I know, for some of you — parents, caregivers, those on super-tight budgets, in school — that’s not easy to do.
2018 did not begin well for me — the first time in many years I earned no income at all from my freelance work, for two months.
And our fixed monthly living costs, even without children or debt, are more than $5,000 a month, so no income from my side meant digging into our savings. (Which we are lucky to have!)
Burned out, I recently took a two-week break, and that cost us even more lost income and savings, in hotel/gas/meals, for 2 weeks back in Ontario, where I grew up and have many friends. (A last-minute change of plans meant our free dog-sitting housing fell through.)
The “freedom” of freelance work also means that every minute we’re not working, we lose income. No paid vacation days for us!
But oh, I needed some time off, and so did my weary full-time freelance husband Jose, a photo editor.
We didn’t do very much: napped, read magazines and books, had some very good meals, enjoyed long evenings with old friends, took photos, hit some golf balls at the driving range. Visited with my Dad, who lives alone and who turns 89 in June.
I was burned out and deeply frustrated by endless rejections and some nasty encounters. Fed up!
I came home renewed, and have been pitching up a storm of fresh ideas and projects, trying for some new and much more ambitious targets. I’ve also been asking others for more help achieving some of my goals than I used to — doing everything alone is exhausting and demoralizing. (It’s really interesting to see who follows through, generously, and who — for all their very public social media all about how they believe deeply in mentorship — won’t lift a finger.)
In a country, (the U.S., where I live) and state (New York) where costs are so high and many people work insane hours, it’s counter-cultural to even admit to wanting a break, let alone taking one.
Not a glamorous brag-worthy Insta-perfect exotic and foreign vacation.
No poolside fruity drinks with little umbrellas in them.
Just a break.
I’m really glad that we did.
Are you able to carve out time to recharge?
Daily? Weekly? Every few months?