A couple weeks ago, I posted about taking time for rest. Rest, not just sleep or physical rest in the general sense of the word. But also rest and relief in social, emotional, and spiritual areas of our lives. It is hard to take the time for rest. As a mom or caregiver that has so many demands to care for and shape the life of another person, to take time to rest takes intentionality. Rest is a very individual thing. I wanted to share with you what other women do to find and schedule rest in their lives.
I asked friends and family on Facebook and in private to share what they do to find and schedule rest in their lives. They willingly shared what works for them, but also what is really hard about taking the time for rest. Here are their stories:
said that what is restful to her is being awake before her kids are awake. It just doesn’t feel good to her to start the day by being woken up by her kids. She likes to get up have devotions and drink a cup of coffee before her kids are awake. She feels like this helps her start the day ahead of the game. The other thing she mentioned that helps her feel and incorporate rest is simplifying when it comes to evening tasks. She likes her house to be cleaned before she goes to bed. However, she does not want to spend her whole evening cleaning. She changes her expectations so that she has plenty of time to sit and do something fun in the evening not just household tasks.
has small children and since her 3rd baby was born she has been getting up at 5:15am to exercise and to have personal time with the Lord. She admitted she has felt challenged by the fact that she has had a hard time going to bed early to compensate for getting up early. So during this season, where she has been getting up early to care for her spiritual and physical body she has not been getting as much sleep. I really appreciated her honesty about the challenge of getting rest. It is a challenge and during some seasons we tend to focus on rest in certain areas and not in others.
intentionally takes Sunday as a day of rest for her and her kids, not doing any homework or housework on that day. As part of taking time to rest, they do something that is low stress like watching a movie or video games.
said she finds rest in her morning routine. She gets up before anyone else in her household. Because she does this, she has the time for the spiritual rest of meditating on a Psalm or Proverb from the Bible and doing her Bible study. But she also makes time during that routine to find physical rest in a walk and rest through spending time on a hobby like gardening. She admits though that in order to do this, she has to go to bed early.
said that she loved what Sheri does and would like to be able to do it…someday. She is trying to get as much sleep as possible each night. She already struggles with the sleep she needs each night because she doesn’t sleep well. I loved her honesty about her struggle with sleep and her need to try to get as much sleep as possible.
shared that she likes the idea of getting up early to take the time to do devotions and make time for herself. But at the time she shared, she admitted that during this season with her 1 ½ year old it was hard to have the stamina to do that, while being very pregnant and not sleeping at night. And since then she has had her baby and now she has a toddler and an infant. She said there isn’t much time that is really quiet about her life. But she has changed how she looks at her need for those things. She sees great value in sharing those things that are restful for her with her daughter. Things like playing piano, reading, and listening to scripture recordings. She is enjoying how her daughter is starting to enjoy those times too.
I can honestly say that what I have needed and been able to do during different parts of my adult life for rest has changed over and over again. When my kids were tiny, I loved laying in bed in the morning, even when they were climbing on me. But I also really needed time to myself, so it wasn’t unusual for my husband to take care of the kids and for me to slip out in the evening to go to a coffee shop for “quiet.” As my kids have gotten older, rest has been easier. Now, I find it so valuable to be up several hours before my kids for exercise, devotions, and work. I also love Sunday afternoons because we put on a movie and while my girls are watching that, I lay on the couch and read or nap. The only way these moments worked were to try out different things until I found something that worked.