**We started back to school this week.  It’s been such a comfort…the week is going well and there is real joy in the work that is our day to day life.  The following is a reflection on the return to our routine:

A Restful Routine

routine:   an unvarying or habitual method or procedure

Though the definition may sound a bit boring, there is comfort and rest in familiarity.

The past few weeks have been full.  It’s been a prayerful time…reflecting upon the coming of our Savior.  A joyful time…celebrating Feast days, watching Christmas movies, listening to Christmas music,  receiving gifts.  A stressful time…crafting, baking, decorating and cleaning.  And a peaceful time…more time at Church, and very, very little school.

We’ve had a nice long rest, but, just like an extended vacation, we’ve all been a bit anxious for “home.”  For that which is familiar and thus, comforting.  I’ve often felt this way, when we’ve traveled far from home:  while entranced by new sights and sounds, excited by the newness of each day’s activities, I still eventually find myself longing for home.  No matter the allurement, no matter the excitement, the pull toward the comfort of routine is undeniable, with rest and peace the reward.

You may ask “Rest?  How can a return to the routine be called rest?  Isn’t this work?  Isn’t this the “daily grind,” so to speak?”

It’s truly a matter of perception.  I think back to three extremely difficult pregnancies.  Bed rest of no less than 3 to 4 months in each.  There was nothing as exhausting as a day spent in idleness.  I could read as much as I wanted, knit as much as I wanted, sleep as much as I wanted…and so I wanted none of those things.  The only comfort available was the knowledge that I was bringing forth new life…in great suffering.  And in the back of my mind:  the very real possibility that I might not walk again.  I was spared that particular cross, through God’s infinite mercy.  The very first day I regained my mobility (in each instance), I mopped the floor and cleaned the toilets with such joy and passion!  My perspective had changed, and the routine all of a sudden became a cause for joy…

As it is now.  We’ve had our fill of fun and games, and then some.  It’s time to go back.  Back to school.  Back to work.  Back to our routine.  Happier children, after this time of rest.  A happier mom, too.

There is rest in the routine.  The comfort that comes from a job well done, and rest that is earned…