For years and years — you only have to go into my archives to see — I have suffered from severe depression on returning to the US. In retrospect, I can see why. I put too much pressure on myself to do, do. The more tired I felt, the more I pushed myself at anything, at everything, from the many things that have to be done when returning to a home after six months, to writing, to feeling terrible I wasn’t writing: I wasn’t good enough, successful enough, pretty and young enough. I did not allow myself the transitional space and time to segue into another life. This time, everything’s changed and I am having a truly happy time. I rest when my body tells me to, sleep a lot when I need it, and leisurely set my space  in order. Payson, terrific mate, arrives a week before me and does so much before I even get here that I don’t have to deal with the rest of the house, just my own study and the kitchen, stocking it and cooking.

Why this change? What has caused it? Ultimately, of course, it is grace. But one can invite grace by doing one’s homework. And really, there is only one homework to do — constantly — to be conscious of your needs, to listen to the body, to treat it like an infant, and give it what it needs by way of nourishment and rest.

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