rest

Food, Health, Hospitality Industry

I picked a profession that doesn’t allow for much brain rest.

In fact, it’s a job that prides itself on being the most busiest and most tired. I would be lying if I didn’t feel good sometimes about having a really long day. I kind of like being tired, but I don’t like what it perpetuates.

I’ve done what I’ve had to do in the restaurant biz, and I have it really easy. This is the first time ever, working in the industry, that making a living and rest have evened out. Sure, some weeks are more tiring and require me to be present 60+ hours a week. Then I get some weeks where I actually eat about three meals a day. Some days I even get to sit down for them.

But that’s just been my life for the past 10 years.

I’ve decided to take a break from drinking, among other things. I’m doing this for a lot of reasons, currently for my body/mind health. Alcohol is the sneakiest one. Part of me is doing it so that I can drink a beer or a glass of wine in my 50’s and 60’s and be okay.

Also, I was just feeling really awful after drinking. More so than usual. I try to pay attention. Sometimes, your brain goes straight to “make this feel better immediately” — cue alcohol, food, sugar, dumb TV.

There is a pressure to medicate.

Rarely do I have two days off in a row that I can not be at the restaurant. Currently, it’s not so bad. I have a great crew who take care of things and do a super job at it. This is worth its weight in gold. Any chef or manager will tell you the weight lifted off your shoulders when you can be gone from your business and know things are being taken care of properly.

Noonday_Rest

I draw back into myself on days like this. I have some time to dream, for myself and for the business. This is the most important thing. You cannot be inspired if you are stuck frying eggs and fixing drains tired, because we do that more than anything most days.

There is also some guilt to self care. “You’re not drinking!? Bummer!!”
Man, don’t ever say that to someone. You never know what demons someone is fighting.

My mind is wracked with guilt about how this business is done. How some of us can make livings and other cannot. Some of that comes with how much people are willing to pay for food. Then there are other things like the thinnest margins of profit, mixed with food cost and labor and rent.

Some part of my mind wonders what it’d be like to work for a large business and I didn’t have to carry that weight. I try to fight the good fight, and hope that being good to our employees means not making them feel like shit if they mess up.

Grace, not just by us, but also by customers is important.

You can make all the difference in the world by being understanding that mistakes will happen. The pressure to not disappoint is insurmountable. So, when we do, we feel kind of crushed. To you, it seems like a fairly easy job, but there is also a lot of love that goes into these things, and when you misinterpret it for lazy and dumb, it really goes a long way to mess with our heads.

So you have one of the biggest parts here. Be a good diner, and support the folks trying to make a living and a better life for themselves. Some of us really love this work, and people are the hardest things to navigate.

Getting back to what I want to say, out of all of this, is to to rest your mind. Quiet the voices and remember your place in the grand scheme of everything moving around us. Get a massage. Go for a walk. Watch something that will make you laugh.

Be kind to your brain and your body. Listen to it. Give it a break. The weight of the cosmos is always pressing down on it, so just be aware of the pressures it has to handle without the stresses of moving in the world.

Allow some wiggle room for things to be sloppy if you need the dishes to sit for a few hours. Allow yourself to drift off into a nap without feeling like your to-do list will be waiting for you when you wake up. There are always things we could be doing, just remember to fit yourself in.

Love yourself, and leave room for the world to love you in return.

 

happening

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I wonder if I can learn to be reckless again.

After something breaks you, you try to be safe so it won’t hurt as bad anymore, but it’s becoming very clear to me that things are always happening to us. Whether they are good or bad. Things are happening.

All of the time.

There are some days, where I can float above my body. Already, I live every day remembering people and places and how they made me feel. It’s a cycle I run through, and I’m not sure I’ve had a day where I don’t think about the moments that sent me onto a different trajectory.

I’m sure I’m not the only one.

I am a bit afraid to love another person deeply again. I know for a fact that I will give myself up to it. I will lose something in my cooking. I will regret some of that life, I know. Of being obsessed with some form of my occupation and wondering if any person out there would be able to accept the moments where the thing I love to do, competes with their relationship with me.
This absolutely breaks my heart.

I am a stubborn fool, quite often.

Raw feeling, many days. Where I just don’t think I have any more to give, when it’s the thing I love the most.

These days, my cup is so full — I s’pose of everything a human can be full of. Hunger. Fear. Love. Regret. Compassion. Rage. Wonder. Contentment.

And I come home, and push off my shoes and collapse onto some soft surface big enough for my frame. There are times I want to weep with it all — to really just — let the skies have it all. Maybe something up there is listening after all.

constedujour

Today, I am jealous of free weekends. Of an easier love. Sun-burned faces and Sunday naps wrapped tightly with a warm body or animal (or both). And in my head, I wonder if I did good enough today.

If I was fast enough. Or kind enough. Or if I hurt someone’s feelings or whether or not I’ll have the energy to muster up a soft hello at a local church meeting. Truly, I have a lot on my shoulders and a dull pain riding up into my neck.

But, things are always happening to us.
And like the prayer goes: it’s for our healing.

It’s all happening for us to move through and to become so wonderfully and tragically human, with the world and the people of it pulling us in a million different ways.

For now, I will rest my head and give the dull ache in my neck some time to take it easy. I will wrap myself tightly in this brown blanket and probably wake myself up with a snore or two.

I have my own Sunday kinda love, and today, it looks like all of the things that have made me — and have made me goofy and flawed and tenderhearted — and know that all along, everything’s been happening.

 

slow moves

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Gently, now.

Slowly pivoting as to not spill my hot tea and mess of scrambled eggs I have mounded on a tiny plate.

I grimace a bit, due to the misfortune of fracturing my foot at work.
I am not good at this. I am not good at this!

That is what I say in my head, and for most people who find themselves all of a sudden limited to what they can and can’t do. Even more so, as walking is a bit of a chore.

Soft.

How do I manage to move around this heavy frame so softly? I can’t say that I do so very well. As a matter of fact, I ripped off the towel rack in one of my best friend’s bathroom trying to save myself from a bad foot placement. Luckily, he laughed after I apologized. Thankful for that grace, indeed.

I fear for my high center of gravity.

Slow.

Slow moves. Robot-like. Sliding my gimpy leg as to not put too much pressure on broken bits.

I am not good at this.

DSC05911

I move back and forth between my couch and my bed. My tiny bottle of pain meds sits next to my heater that can barely keep up the warmth in these old timbers. When I am finally warm, wrapped in my blanket, and the pulse of my right foot dies down to a low slumber, I am grateful for the rest. I happily slide into my worn down pillows and click off the tiny lamp that lights my late night wanderings.

The morning is stiff. A little bit better, I think. I would wake myself up in the middle of the night, jolts of electricity running through my leg from twisting my foot in an odd way. I sit up. Shake it off, and fall back asleep. Less so, now that I’m adjusting.

Sitting in the clinic, I think, “Of course I’m going to write about this!” Because that’s just what I do. I see myself in story.

I can’t help but to wonder when this great moment of clarity will come — when I will feel that all was for this one reason. I don’t think that’s how it will work. But I woke up this morning and felt like I had moved around some heavy things in my dreams.

During the night I would stir about, feeling like I was rearranging some heavy boxes. Much like the one I jammed my foot into. I was pushing them different places. Still able to be found, but in a way, making room for other things. Like new people. New feelings. New thoughts on God and love, giving my body the space to heal from all sorts of things.

It is never a bad thing, finding new light within your soul.

It is there, always, covered up by bombings and elections and having one’s heart broken into a million pieces.

Small moves.

albeit, heavy.

soft.

gentle.

making room for the light to get in.

I suppose when I think about cracks and broken spaces,

they allow room for exposure.

And I think that maybe, Rumi says it best:

The wound is the place where the Light enters you.