Saturday, May 7, 2016

What I Learned From a Colouring Book: Self Reflection After Several Days of Enforced Rest

Acting on the doctor's suggestion that I stop pushing so hard through times of exhaustion and get some rest instead, coupled with thoroughly inflaming an old knee injury during physio earlier in the week, I obeyed my self-imposed injunction to rest for nearly 3 days this past week:  Wednesday, Thursday and part of Friday.  This morning I got back with the programme and ignored my throbbing knee so I could get the laundry done and put away.

So, since I spent a lot of time colouring in my $2.99 colouring book with $10 worth of felt markers, what did I learn about myself and about resting while filling up blah line drawings with colour?

Weeeeeelllll, I did learn a few things:

1. It is impossible for me to truly be at peace and resting when I feel I am wasting my time on something so completely inane.

 2.  I simply cannot sit and colour without multi-tasking, even when I am at rest. Colouring is possible while watching tv, listening to books on tape, visiting on the phone and mentally planning the next grocery shopping trip. 

3.  I cannot rest at all without multi-tasking!  If I am watching tv I also need to be answering emails or blogging...or colouring.  If I am on the phone I need to be watching news on tv with the sound off or pacing back and forth in the living room or climbing up and down the stairs.  If I am reading a book that doesn't require too much in-depth thought and attention I need to be listening to music or writing notes on my ipad about something or other unrelated to the book.  I learned I can be reading a book with the colouring book beside me and if there is a deep concept in the book that requires more depth of thought, I can colour in a few spaces while I think.  

 4. I learned that resting isn't as wonderful as it is cracked up to be!  Resting is downright boring in fact. I was bored and I wasn't even resting all that successfully.

5.  There is NOT some kind of frustrated artist within me just waiting for that chance to escape and reform my bladdy blah life.  Nope, not at all, not remotely.  My son is the artist, not me.  I have not the patience nor the creative thought process required to actually create something artistic.  I can't even colour within the lines of someone else's attempt at art that graces the pages of the colouring book!!  Worse, as the pages continued to fill up at an ever more rapid pace, I stopped caring what the picture looked like when I was done.  Smudges between colours, slopping colour out of bounds, badly conceived colour palette...not a pang of regret did I experience..nada!!  It will be all I can manage on my next rest day to try to complete the remaining pages of the book so I can toss the whole works into the trash and be done with it, plus find some small child who would enjoy receiving some gently used felt markers.  

6. I have an even shorter attention span than I realized. 

So much for days of resting.  I am not going to do that again, ever!!  If I wrap my paining knee in a tensor bandage I will be able to return to real life and get a move on!  Tonight in fact!  I am going to the symphony tonight!!! It will be resting again though I suppose...with wonderful music in my ears, a friend to talk to during intermission and other friends to try to locate in the philharmonic choir during the performance.  

Rest, schmest.........

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