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Monday, June 11, 2012

Relax and fall apart

Sunday was absolutely beautiful. Just the kind of day people hope to get when they vacation in New Hampshire. I’m here all the time, but I appreciate it here as much or more than the tourists.
A few years ago my lovely wife worked at a hospital located in a major tourist town. It’s one of those places where the population increases ten fold during the vacation seasons. She saw a lot of sick and injured people from far away.

There were the common injuries one would expect, everything from broken legs from skiing to sun burnt dehydrated boaters.

Then there was something odd. There was a significant number of people that didn’t fit the vacation injury mold. They brought their problems with them. These people were often the hard working, hardly ever take a break type “A” personalities. Suddenly they find themselves on vacation and they fall apart.

These people were working sick and/or injured, often for months. They keep going by willpower and force of habit. When the go on vacation, they finally have a moment to listen to their body. Their body tells them to go to the hospital. It’s amazing the problems people ignore. That’s fine in an emergency. Our bodies can do some fantastic things. We can dip deep into our physical and mental reserves. However, we can’t do that 100% of the time.

I wonder how many of those people took the time to do a little self reflection. My guess is that most of them went right back at it. A small few may have asked why they were killing themselves doing something they hated for people they didn’t like.

On the flip side, how many people don’t take vacations; they take sick days? They work until they can’t physically do it at all. The emphasis in this society is to give 110%. A basic understanding of math shows that’s not going to work out well. How about giving 90%? What’s wrong with having a little strength in reserve.

Do you want your life to be a sprint or a marathon?



  1. I can easily give 1000% for a day... followed by 4 weeks at 50%. Like you said, great for emergencies. But I think it's better to give 125% one day followed by 90% for 4 days, just to make sure 90% doesn't become all you can do. (And yes, the math isn't supposed to add up.)

    1. A lot of things in life don't add up. :)

  2. Good question...I do need a vacation.

  3. Cruise through life...
    Do what is needed when needed.
    Think ahead, work smart.

  4. At my age, I just plain fall apart no matter what I am doing.

  5. Then it might as well be for something you enjoy.

  6. I havent' been to New Hampshire in almost 40 years! I have done the vacation fall apart bit myself.....just because I had no opportunity to fall down before those few days. But it has been many years since then; I learned to give myself remedial days to prevent total collapse.

    With fibromyalgia and spinal bothersomeness, sometimes I still "fall apart"....but I remind myself to follow a rather Christ-like rule: no matter WHAT is wrong with me, I rise upon the third day.

    1. NH is worse off for your absence.

      My lovely wife is living with fibro -which means I am too. Let's just say plans are rarely set in stone.

    2. I hear that...flexibility has to do with more than body parts!

  7. There was a time when my life was a whirlwind 24/7/365.

    Eventually, your body forces you to slow down, either through illness or death.

    I'm glad mine was illness because it led me to re-examine everything & eventually meet George.

    We both have health challenges & were both caretakers for family members prior to meeting. Guess that prepared us for this time in our lives.

    Doubly thankful for that too!

    1. Hope you have a nice comfortable pace you can keep up for a long long time.