Monday, November 5, 2012

creating sabbath.

I love working at the bookstore. 

It's a dream come true, and some days -- days when I walk to work in the crisp fall air, days when little girls curl up on pillows and read aloud to themselves -- I really do feel like Kathleen Kelly, really do feel like I'm doing just what I was meant to do. 

Retail, though, is hard, brain-bending, muscle-using work, and I am working perhaps harder and more than I have ever before. My head is constantly swimming with random marketing ploys and event details, with book titles and story time crafts. It's never ending, this cycle of ideas and plans, and although I anticipated some of that labor, I'm not sure I ever could have been adequately prepared for just how much my brain would be in overdrive. 

When I took this job in August, one of my biggest concerns was the new schedule I'd be undertaking. I now work Tuesdays through Saturdays, 10 a.m.. to 6 p.m. Those two extra hours I get every morning? They're amazing. I rarely have to rush off to work; when I've adeqautely prepared for my week, I'm able to eat breakfast in the morning, able to watch an episode of Hart of Dixie (my newest guilty pleasure), able to walk, able to be a little quiet and ease into my days. 

And Mondays off? I'm cleaning my house, grocery shopping with the stay-at-home moms, and actually cooking our family a decent dinner. It's delightful, and I actually love having a day off while the rest of the world heads to work.


Jordan still works Mondays through Fridays, which means his day off? It's not my day off. An entire day we used to spend together -- running errands, going on lunch dates, hanging out, watching football -- is gone. Sure, we both get lots more done on our days apart -- Jordan cleans and washes the dog and preps for his Bible class; I grocery shop and do laundry and read -- but it comes at a price. 

We've begun even more dedicated in our Friday night date night tradition, but we've also tried really hard to establish a true Sabbath. 

Our Sundays used to be filled to the brim, often in the best kinds of ways. We'd go to church, attend Bible classes, head to lunch with friends or family, then Jordan would spend hours prepping for our small group studies while I cleaned up and got dinner ready. We'd meet with our small group until late into the night, praying and laughing and fellowshipping together until we realized it was 11:00 and we all had to get up early for work the next morning. 

In August, I told Jordan that couldn't be our reality anymore. Our time together and times of rest are too important to me, are too vital for my well-being, to pack Sundays will one function after another. 

This fall, we've hit our stride. 

We still head to church each Sunday morning. Jordan teaches a Bible class (about Myers-Briggs, which has been fascinating!), and every so often, we still go out with family and friends. But at least once or twice a month, we go out for brunch, just the two of us, leaving us with long extensions of time ready to be filled with walks in the park and naps in our front lawn. We've created an unspoken Sunday night movie night, and our afternoons are much slower paced than before.

Sundays are something I treasure, now for a different reason than before. 

They are my Sabbath, my truest day of rest, and a time of peace and joy and quiet with my family.

There is something powerful about creating Sabbath when the rest of the world embraces chaos, something life-giving about rest and relaxation, about laying your head in the grass and reading in the Adirondacks that sit on your front yard. 

My week may be busy, but my Sundays are beautifully open wide, and I could not be happier about it.


Lacey said...

I love that you get to work in a book store and that you feel like Kathleen Kelly, because she is awesome :)

Resting days are the absolute best. I think it's great that you appreciate that too when the world is so busy busy busy. Simplicity and quietness is one of life's great joys :)

Have a great Monday!

Anonymous said...

That Myers-Briggs Bible class sounds pretty fascinating! (Psychology student here... Myers-Briggs is my favorite test I've studied so far.) How is he tying that into a Bible class?

Elizabeth Dean said...

I get this. Ever since I started worshiping with Brandon on Sundays my Sabbaths have gotten a lot slower. First, I leave my computer in Tallahassee which means work and busy work does not get done. No pinning or reading blogs or anything else. Also, we take naps and catch up on DVR and sometimes he reads to me. I love that. It has really changed my weekend to worship, eat a lunch, and then spend the weekend without my computer or the internet.

AbbieBabble said...

Oh, Annie. Like always, you hit the nail right on the head. I remember in college, when I was crazy busy and doing homework all the time, I always went to church on Sundays (at my northeast college, that was a pretty unusual thing) in part because it was the one time of the week when I absolutely didn't need to be stressed about anything. Rest is so important, and your new sabbath days sound so perfect. I'm glad you've hit your stride! (Now if only I could come close to approaching mine. . .)

Sabrina said...

I like that picture:) Also, I might sneak in and visit bookclub in a few weeks!