Reflections In Hindsight

Grace in the Rearview Mirror…it's closer than it appears

  • Ephesians 4:29

    Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. (NIV)

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Disconnect Days

Posted by Lisa Lickel on October 10, 2012

On behalf of April:


Me (in a whiny voice) “Honey, why don’t you hold me much?”

Hubs (with a shrug) “You don’t slow down enough for me to catch you.”

I laughed, because it wasn’t the answer I expected. And because he was right.

I’ve been thinking lately about how many hours of work I put in every day. If we’re talking writing-related work, about nine. If we’re talking cleaning, cooking, caring for the kids, homework, shopping, yard work (and the list goes on), we’re getting closer to…every hour I’m not sleeping.

From the moment I wake up at 5:30 to the time I go to bed 10:30, I don’t stop working in one form or another. When I do stop, I crash—out like a light as soon as I sit down.

Two Sundays ago, I woke up and knew I needed a day off—one of those rare “disconnect” days. I wasn’t burned out, but I sensed it coming. First thing that morning, I told my 8 year-old that I wasn’t going to turn on my phone or my computer all day.

Her eyes lit up, and she gave one of her “you’re the best mommy in the world” hugs. I was a little stunned by her enthusiastic response and was happy she was on board with the idea.

An hour later, while I was combing her hair for church, she exclaimed, “This is going to be the best day EVER!”

My mind ran through what we had planned for the day, but came up blank on activities. No children’s choir, no eating out (leftovers again), no one was coming over to play. It was going to be a rather uneventful day, as far as Sundays went.

“What’s so special about today?” I asked, thinking surely I was forgetting something we had on the calendar. Was I supposed to bring a covered dish for an after service fellowship? (Those are her favorite.)

She splayed her hands, palms up, and looked at me at out of the tops of her eyes. “You’re not going to be working!” Then she proceeded to tell me everything she and I were going to do that afternoon.

  1. Sit on my bed and watch a girly movie
  2. Do our nails
  3. Make moccasins for her Fall Festival Native American costume
  4. Go to Goodwill and look for accessories for the same costume

We did them all.

I don’t FEEL like I work too much. I hardly talk on the phone, and when I do, it’s usually while the kids are in school. But what I think I do and how my family perceives the same things are two different monsters.

The family doesn’t complain about me working too much, but I can recognize a warning bell when I see one.

Now, I’m scheduling “disconnect days” on my calendar.

Have warning bells been going off in your home? Are you acting on them? Making adjustments? Making time for those who matter most?

You might be surprised at the enthusiastic reception you get if you do!


9 Responses to “Disconnect Days”

  1. I need to do this on a regular basis–and not make myself crazy, but I’m terrible at scheduling down time. Something always comes up. LIfe after Kids doesn’t slow down much. You just feel like you should do more because you have more time.

    • Really? It doesn’t slow down?! So it’s a matter of not taking on MORE just because you have more time, then huh? Kinda like not increasing your style of living just because you get a higher paying job. LOL

      I’m currently taking a week of down time. It’s HARD, but it’s also very wonderful!!

  2. I have more disconnect than connect days,and the reason for this is not the most pleasant. But I an understand why with your schedule you need them. Please take then or else…..

    • Yvonne, I’m sorry to hear your disconnect days aren’t the pleasant sort. I’m trying to learn to destress before it gets out of hand. Stress is so bad for us! Thanks for stopping by.

  3. April, this is a WONDERFUL post and a needed one by many—including me! Even though my kids are grown and gone, I still have a hubby, a mom nearby, and others that need me. It is so easy to work all the time when you “only” work from home.

    I’ll never forget when my daughter was in 5th grade and I was doing free-lance writing. We had just moved to a new state and I was looking for new contacts locally to write for. I was completely shocked by my daughter’s plea to “Please stop writing!” I had no idea how consuming it had become. Since we still needed extra income, I got a scheduled part time job outside the home—and temporarily set my “pen” aside. I have no regrets at that choice.

    You’re so right. It is too easy to only see from our own perspective. It’s a wise mom and/or wife that listens to her family.

    Thanks for sharing your story. Enjoy your “Disconnect” days. :)

    • Elaine, I’ll need to schedule a “reread” to remind myself to take disconnect days. LOL It’s so easy to get caught up in everything writing related, because it’s something we love so much. Think about it. Writers LOVE what they do. Most do so on the side of their “day” job. Why? Because we love it!! And because we love it so much, it’s not a job, but a pleasure. It takes lots of self-discipline to stop.
      “Please stop writing!” much have been a huge eye-opener for you! Glad you did the right thing. Not easy to do!

  4. Thanks for sharing this post. I think I might schedule some disconnect days myself. One day a week for me and one day a week for my family. It is easy when you work from home to work continuously and everybody needs a break, so let’s schedule a few

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