We all so badly need time to just rest!
By Caitlin Kelly
When you work wholly freelance, it tends to be feast or famine — so much work at once you’re pulling 10 to 12+ hour days, working nights and weekends and not taking a vacation — or panicking because the work has dried up but the bills keep coming.
The pandemic has exacerbated this problem.
Thrilled to have won this in an online auction from the NYC auction house Doyle. It’s a vintage kilim, a flat-weave Caucasian wool rug in perfect condition.
We are grateful and lucky to both have a lot of work, enough to even finally add some needed, costly and nice things to our home, like a new sofa, a vintage rug scored at auction, and hiring a painter to do a badly needed repair to the (sigh) cracked walls in our living room, an annoying and ongoing feature of living in a 60 year old building.
But we’ve had only taken four days’ vacation in six months and we’re whipped. We usually take a two or even three week break — doing no work at all — and travel back to Canada or overseas to rest and recharge.
Not this year.
The fallow field is one that isn’t being worked, and is being quietly replenished.
It’s resting, as this writer posted in 2017:
In the Middle Ages, it was common for villages to have three fields of farmland. At any given time, two of these fields would grow crops while the third lay fallow. Farmers rotated the fallow fields every year, the idea being that after two cycles of farming, the soil needed time to replenish and restore lost nutrients.
When a field lies fallow, it doesn’t look like much is happening. All the other fields are producing bright and colorful crops; we can watch them change from day to day. But the fallow field is just a pile of dirt. It was a pile of dirt yesterday. It will appear to be the same pile of dirt tomorrow.
But within that pile of dirt, a flurry of activity is happening. Worms burrow tunnels that nourish and aerate the soil. Organic matter decomposes into life-giving nutrients. Rainfall gathers into underground water. The health of next year’s harvest depends upon this rich, invisible dance beneath the surface.
So there are days now I just do…nothing.
It’s not really nothing, because I’m usually reading for hours and hours, trying to wade through piles of magazines and newspapers.
But I’m reading more books for sheer pleasure.
I’m watching movies and bingeing on Netflix.
I’m taking an hour’s nap pretty much every day.
Unlike a farmer with three fields I only have one weary heart, mind, soul and body.
I have no “extra” brain to keep using for work —- while the other one just rests!
And with almost nowhere safe to flee to because of this damn virus, a change of scenery in every way, it’s even more enervating to try and wind down in the same small space you work in.
We’re very lucky in New York as finally, all our museums are re-opening.
I can’t wait to “waste time” looking at old beautiful things again.