I’m pretty sure it was on that trip that my husband and I took to the Philippines in February that I had a me-revelation: My idea of the perfect vacation isn’t really laying out on the beach without any cares in the world, reading magazines, and overeating. Oh, I thought it was for quite sometime, and then I thought there was something wrong with me, some underlying anxiety that I needed to deal with, for not wanting the ultimate relaxation vacation.
Now, don’t get me wrong: I enjoyed that trip to the Philippines, and I really enjoyed the time on the beach, the eating, and the magazines. But what I discovered about a vacation is that rather than shirk my spiritual, health, and emotional disciplines, I’d rather use the time to get into the rhythm of a balanced life. I don’t desire to take a vacation from God, or a vacation from my relationships with friends and family, or from treating my body with respect. In fact, during a vacation, I desire to have the time to do these things more thoroughly, without the rush and roar of daily life that makes them difficult.
I haven’t been on a vacation here in Hong Kong, as I’m doing library research at University of Hong Kong and Chinese University of Hong Kong, but in planning the trip, I looked for a place to stay with a gym, a desk to do my writing and correspondence, and a quiet environment to find connection with God and myself. And it’s been great. I’ve rejuvenated to the point where I can’t wait to get back to my busy life, but I’m also rooted in a routine, a balanced lifestyle that I’ll try to keep (imperfectly, I’m sure) when I return to the mainland.
What does vacation mean to you, and what disciplines keep your life in balance?