Free Time

The best part of the day is often when I get to stretch out on my couch or my bed and just let go. Sink in, spread out, and breathe. Feet up on the far armrest—hopefully not usually kicking over the new, unopened bottle of some sort of face wash with sulphur in it for the perfection of the skin of my chin like I just did now, god I love my life and my desire for Face Progress—and also hopefully not at 10:30 a.m.

Some of my best naps are just after I've eaten breakfast. Once I've gone to the bathroom and filled my stomach and decided to leisurely read for the morning before biking to the office at ten to one, the body that just couldn't sleep from 7:50 onward is ready to give it another go, and my mind checks out and then there's nothing to do but set an alarm for noon and hope I'm not too sad when I wake up and realize I have to move and also all my beautiful, daylit free time is gone.

But the relaxation that doesn't herald a guilty nap, that's golden. (I want to take a moment here to mourn the loss of class schedules and dorm living, because the best naps of my life were the winter of my sophomore year. I had eleven to one free, or twelve to three, and that totally justified an afternoon nap. If I didn't eat lunch I could just head up to my room, peel off my scarf, cardigan, jeans, and socks to reveal the perfect nap uniform of tight but cozy H&M turtleneck and leggings. The only good thing about our room facing the weak winter north was that the drapes made it dark enough for a good nap. It was the best. And the point was that this oblivion was guilt-free. It was earned.)

In the evenings, if I'm at home and without plans, I eat dinner and tidy up my living/bedroom, but probably don't do the dishes in the kitchen because that's such a morning thing to do. I read nonfiction, or a novel (nonfiction's really more for the morning too, I think, except that it is sometimes one of the factors leading to the guilty 10:45 a.m. nap; I don't know that I can ever go to grad school because every time I read something factual I fall asleep), or I watch TV on DVD, maybe with popcorn. I breathe.

If I had internet, I could connect with friends far away, but some of their time zones make this unlikely. If I had internet, I might not breathe because of the clicking frenzy and the typetypetyping storm. I'm typing this now sans internet, and I still feel that boring computer rush, the one that locks me in and would keep me up until 3 a.m. when I had people online or no real reason not to. It can't win tonight, because there's just me and this screen, no other people, nothing to read, and a bed calling out to me.

I was thinking I should do yoga every time I blogged. That sounds weird. After an evening blog post, before a morning one, something like that. Because I should do yoga every day, because exercise, flexibility, clearing one's mind. But if that were a requirement, I would probably quit this blogging streak. It's a lesson I learned long ago: don't try to develop too many new habits at once, because you're more likely to develop none.

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