The downside of having an amazing weekend away from home, like I had this past weekend at Realm Makers, is that eventually you have to get back to normal. The high of connecting with other people of like interests and learning and growing and engaging in something you’re passionate about inevitably must give way to the mundane.
What comes up must come down. All good things must come to an end There are probably some more appropriate cliches, but you know what I mean. That much awesome isn’t sustainable long-term. Things like conferences are amazing opportunities. They revitalize and inspire us. They push us and give us new ideas. Afterward, we’re equipped with new tools and new partners and new enthusiasm to take the next step in our endeavors.
But a conference is only a small window, a tiny bubble out of the ordinary in which we can be inspired and refreshed. We have only that brief moment in time in which to grab inspiration, and then we must go back to life. Back to reality. Back to cheesy 80s songs…
Wait, scratch that last part.
Back to life.
In my case, it’s catching up on chores. Dishes and laundry and taking care of kids. To make it more difficult, it’s summer break and the kids are home from school. The initial thrill of not having to go to school has been replaced by the mundane. It’s too hot here for them to go outside for more than a few minutes at a time (highs nearing 110F all this week), and so cabin fever has set in.
Video games and cartoons are a large portion of our daily routine, and as much as I would like to change things up, between the weather and the ginormous baby in my belly draining all my energy, it’s hard to get much done. It’s a struggle to hang on to the fire that was so prevalent over the weekend away. It’s difficult to get back into the grind of not just every day life, but of getting back into a habit of writing and editing and working. Work is hard. It takes a lot of work.
But the benefit of a break, whether it be a vacation or a conference or some other event, is that it gives us that extra push, that extra drive to keep on. It gives us the hope that what we’re doing isn’t all for nothing. That the work and stress and plodding through the mundane isn’t just about getting through another day. It’s working toward something, seeing a goal and striving to meet it. It’s the spark that ignites the slow burn to help us through.