"What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
No time to stand beneath the boughs
And stare as long as sheep or cows.
No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.
No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night.
No time to turn at Beauty's glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance.
No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began.
A poor life this if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare."
The poem is called 'Leisure' and was written by William Henry Davies. It's a very famous poem but I'm sure I'm not alone when I say that I struggle to find time for this kind of leisure. Leisure is counted as going on facebook, going out with friends, maybe even something more energetic like a favourite sport. I even skim read over the poem because I was so impatient to get on with doing the next thing.
We rarely fully stop.
I knew since getting ill that the logical thing to do was to rest, but in my mind this involved signing up to Netflix and watching hours of TV because I was convinced that my mind wouldn't cope with more than 5 minutes of inactivity.
I was encouraged by a lady I met who had partly recovered from CFS/ME and I had read that a number of other people had advocated it too, that I should properly rest for at least 30 minutes a day.
I thought this was crazy - doing absolutely nothing, for 30 minutes?? No TV, no music, no book, nothing. It sounded like a waste of time. We are told constantly that we don't have enough time. Inventions are created that make everything take less time and so we can fit more into our lives and have learned to expect things instantly.
I know that this is said a lot, but since relapsing, I have found it more true than ever, because I was forced to slow down and remove the complications.
Where I felt I couldn't keep up with my friends, I now sort of see it as they can't slow down enough to keep up with me.
I tried resting for 10 minutes yesterday, feeling sceptical. It felt lovely, and I barely noticed the time go by because for once I felt so relaxed. I tried 15 minutes today and I'll keep increasing. Let's see if it actually produces some physical result!