I love March Break! We have a longer break at Christmastime, but with family celebrations and Communications of Learning (or report cards) on the horizon, I never seem to take as much time to relax. Our summer break is the longest of all, but for years, I’ve taught for at least a month over the summer, so again, my “me time” is less. March Break is different. The end of the year is still too far away to start Communications of Learning or report cards, and while I always have a little planning to do, most of the break can truly be used as a break.
Last year, I blogged about my need for March Break, and this week, I’ve been thinking about this as well. But today, I started to also feel a little differently: I began to feel guilty about taking this much time for me.
- I haven’t blogged since the weekend. I haven’t even thought about blogging since then.
- I’ve slept in every day. Usually my alarm goes off at 4:30, and this week, I haven’t gotten up until at least 8:00.
- I just started my fourth book of the break, and every one of them has been a mystery/suspense novel. I usually try to read at least one professional book over the holiday, and thanks to Cory Jobb, I have one to read, but I haven’t even thought about beginning The Play’s The Thing yet.
- I’ve tweeted far less than usual. Most of my tweets are actually conversational ones with Lori St. Amand about the books I’m reading versus professional ones and reflective posts.
I know that taking this “me time” is beneficial for both me and our students. When we feel calmer, our interactions with children change, and that’s good for everyone. But as I see posts about planning and professional reads, I begin to wonder if I should be doing more. How much time do you take for yourself over the holidays? How do you avoid the guilt that sometimes comes from focusing on “you?” I’d welcome some words of advice as I continue to read, relax, and enjoy March Break!
I will admit that I haven’t taken as much “me time” this holiday as I thought I might, but I have spent some time reading a book for fun, playing video games with my husband, and taking the dog for extra long walks. I have also spent a little too much time on blogging and website development and IMMOOCing and not enough time on writing IEPs. I feel a little guilty that I haven’t gotten more done, but I also know that without the break, I would be too burnt out to be any good for the students. I also know that by doing some of these things, I am allowing my brain to restore its creativity, something that you will need now that your art gallery is finished. I try to focus on the knowledge that my brain needs the break. Also, that really good mystery novel has a way of engulfing a person and making the outside world disappear. 😉 Enjoy the rest of your break!
Thanks for the comment, Melanie! All great thoughts. I know that this break is important, and I wouldn’t have it any other way, but I still feel guilty that I haven’t done more. Maybe this is just a case of accepting and living with the guilt, knowing that it is okay for us to take time for ourselves. Sounds like you’ve been busy this March Break, but glad you’re taking a bit of “me time” as well. I will definitely echo your thoughts about a good mystery!
All’s I did was go where the waves took me. I say yes so easily to offers at work that I often find myself chasing my own tail to keep my commitments. And that is how I like it. I flipped that mindset and said yes to everything this break- wonderfulness came into being because of it. The day trips to the ROM, Science Centre, Casa Loma, date day with my spouse, sushi, Lego, writing for pleasure, spoken word evening, podcasting with my kids, deeper convos with my spouse, yoga ALL happened when I made space for them.
If I can intentionally build wonder for my students, then I can do the same for myself. This is not a zero sum approach, work and life have equal sway on my wellness I just have come to realize that I need to be at the centre of the intention and not pit professional and personal against each other.
Thanks for your comment, Chris! I love this thinking. I’m so glad that it resulted in a great break for you, and I hope that it continues to change things for you (positively) after the break. You may have just helped me reframe my guilt. Thank you!