As I walk out across the escarpment, the Trent valley dropping off on one side and the plateau of farmland heading off into the distance, that familiar feeling comes to me, winter perhaps? A sense of things coming to an end? I can't quite put my finger on it but it seems so familiar.
Out on the horizon, a lone tree, the sun shining bright behind, preparing for slumber, skeleton like, just a few leaves remaining. The birds are in a rush against time to strip the remaining berries from the hedgerow, the colours over in the wood on the valley side, a mix of browns, gold's, and emerald green of the evergreens.
There is something so comforting in this view, mind and body start to slow to nature's rhythm. There was a time when I hated this time of year, the darker nights would send me into a deep funk that seemed to last through to the spring but just thinking that now looking out at the horizon, I realise that was another life, but it doesn't stop it being real, the years I forgot the art of rest.
The art of rest
I call rest an art because it actually is, it also puts some value to it, like a wonderful masterpiece that we can create.
Rest has been so undervalued in recent times, I would like to say that in writing this, it goes some way to turn that tide but I'm not sure it will and it isn't the point anyway, some will get this, others won't, it depends where we are in life and rest is very subjective, a unique fingerprint.
Consumerism, economics, fomo, it seems at times that we have to put on a complex show to keep the wheels turning constantly, it is easy to forget that rest is so blooming wonderful.
In my own life, it feels like I am being pulled in two directions, rest is a constant practice. A reminder that we have to value it, make it a piece of artwork, carving the time into our busy lives, it is no small thing.
My invitation here in today's blog is "what does rest mean for you?"
If you are with me, let's turn the tide on rest deficit, make a stand, put rest high up there on our agenda's. I reckon in time the world will thank us for it, but most of all do it for yourself, the kindest thing you can offer to yourself, the forgotten art of rest.
As I head my way off the escarpment, back through the wood, weaving in and out of the trees that are preparing for slumber, I can hear a robin up in the tree, singing a tune, through the skeleton like trees, that filtered, autumn sunlight, washed out, as if I had taken my watercolours to it. As I head out of the wood, I place a hand on the old oak tree, see you soon old fella, have a good rest.