My Brain Has Gone on Vacation for Christmas (The Rest of Me Tagged Along As Well)

It’s been a long year.

I don’t know about any of you, but my poor brain gets a lot of use over the course of a year.  I’m always thinking about something.  This past year, I expended much brain power on the following:

  • Performing the seemingly endless progression of tasks at work (and not only on work time, I might add)
  • Trying to anticipate what other tasks were on the horizon to adjust and accommodate my various schedules
  • Devising more efficient ways to execute my tasks and maximize my time
  • Remaining mindful of my physical surroundings and planning against potential dangers to my person (as any paranoid-type person would)
  • Keeping track of people around me – where they are located in proximity to me so we don’t get in each others’ way – and also how my words and behaviours are affecting and being received by them to prevent my coming off like too much of a left-brained drone or introverted recluse
  • Rehearsing in my mind almost everything I say before I say it in that same left-brained, introverted way of mine, constantly measuring my words and tone to give as little – or as much – offense as the situation calls for
  • Paying attention to local and world events through various forms of media


Thinking about writing.

My brain is always in high gear, speeding from one thought to another, passing by past concerns, gaining ground on up and coming ones.  That is hard enough.

But sometimes, I have to throw my brain into overdrive to overtake an especially pressing (usually work-related) obligation.  Sometimes, I have to leave my brain in overdrive without a break – or a brake – for days.

I don’t even know why I’m carrying on with a car metaphor when my ride is a 21-speed hybrid bike.

In any case, with my Christmas holidays now upon me, I’ve decided to take a break, not only from my day job, but from all extraneous thinking whatsoever.

My brain is sorely in need of some R&R, and that’s exactly what it’s going to get.  Thankfully, it doesn’t take much thought to a) breath or b) clothe and feed myself.

It takes a little more to c) get myself from Point A to Point B to Point C and back again as I make my way along what I’ve dubbed the 2nd Annual Eastern Canada Friends & Family Christmas Tour (trademark pending).  At present, the Tour sees me in Halifax, Nova Scotia – my hometown – located over 6000 km cross-country from Vancouver, as conveniently reached via two planes, three stopovers, 12 hours, and four time zones.

A little more focus and attention still is needed to d) not fall down and crack my skull on the giant wooden staircase in my mother’s house that I keep insisting (and she keeps refusing) be lain with a runner for safety.  But I think I’ll be able to manage.

To-Do and Not-To-Do

These trifling worries thus accounted for, I’ll be devoting my remaining grey matter to the three ultra-important items on my Christmas Holiday To-Do List…

  1. Lay around
  2. Read
  3. Watch TV

…while staunchly ignoring the three equally-important items on my Christmas Holiday Not-To-Do List:

  1. Working
  2. Working out
  3. Writing

Yes, the Not-To-Do #3 for reals.  That should give you a clue as to just how serious I am about this relaxation gig.  Because if I’m honest with myself – and why the hell not be; it takes less thought and energy than lying to myself – writing – however (mostly) enjoyable and self-directed it may be – is nonetheless, not unlike my day job, work.

And I’m tired.

To-Do item #3 especially has me excited.  Even as I write this post, I’m parked in front of a mammoth 60-inch flat screen LED.  Mind you, I don’t particularly love TV – by choice, I don’t have my own TV anymore.  But the tube can be so damn restful sometimes: I read once that one’s brain waves while watching TV are slower than when while one is asleep.

That’s the kind of brain activity I’m going for.

Of course, in not being a regular TV viewer, I have no idea what the cool shows are that people watch, or when they’re on, or what channel.

Sure, I could look all that up.  But aside from my dad’s house (where I’ll be spending half my time) having no internet access (no, really; and even more unbelievable: I don’t even really mind), looking stuff up on the computer requires thinking.  So too does jumping into new-to-me TV shows mid-season, for that matter.

Besides, why hook into an unfamiliar show when I can watch all my favourite reruns of Star Trek: The Next Generation and C.S.I., and reunite with two of my TV boyfriends, Jean-Luc Picard and Gil Grissom? (I’m a total sucker for quirky, older, polymathic men in leadership roles with strong moral compasses.)

So, in conclusion, for the next two-and-a-half weeks of the Christmas season, I’ll be degenerating into a languid shadow of my former self – willingly.

Something else I’ve read is that one loses up to 5% muscle tone per week when s/he stops exercising. So by the time I return home on January 4, I’ll be 14.26%* weaker physically, mentally, and creatively.  And 100% more refreshed and ready to take on the challenges of 2013.

To all my blog readers and followers: A very Merry Christmas and/or Happy Holidays to you and yours.  See you all again in 2013.

*A/N: My math may be off on this.  I’ve already put more thought into figuring it out than I wanted to.

(Image source #3 and #4)


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10 thoughts on “My Brain Has Gone on Vacation for Christmas (The Rest of Me Tagged Along As Well)

  1. I hope your math is off. I haven’t exercised in so long that I have minus 500% muscle tone. I’m actually a giant blog of whipped creme. I never get to the movies anymore.

    Well, enjoy your trip and your well-deserved respite from all things thought related. Keep the brain stem operating though. I think you need it for breathing and junk like that.



  2. Looking forward to seeing you here for new year’s! Also, if you do feel up to new TV, I’m telling you: Walking Dead, Downtown Abbey, Game of Thrones. You’ll be glad…plus any one of these will see you all the way from one coast to the other if you have the computer battery power. Happy Christmas.


    • If I gave in to the urge to watch TV regularly, I’d never get any writing done. There are so many hours in a day (especially a work day), after all. Instead, I save up all my TV watching for when I go have for Christmas.

      See you again in 2013! 🙂


  3. Dear Jana,
    Was wondering if your brain is back in gear, lol and whether you would like to participate in the meme, The Next Big Thing, answering questions about your WIP. I’m completing mine and trying to tag people for the meme to keep going.


    • Hi Debbie. Thanks for asking. I will participate so long as you don’t mind me being a bit vague/superstitious/paranoiac about it since I unfortunately am all of those things. I will try to be amusing as well, though. 🙂


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