Ahhh playgrounds of hot metal and concrete, riding bicycles without helmets, riding in cars without a seat-belt let alone a child safety seat, ignored and unattended on a regular basis, staying outside playing until the street lights came on (with no cell phone!), second-hand smoke everywhere, routinely allowed to get hurt, and allowed to win/lose and learn to handle it – those were the days!

I doubt that I would be the same person I am today if I had not lived through all of the above. I believe recess was every bit as important to my growth as classroom time. I climbed to the top of the jungle gym to hang upside down not because I wasn’t afraid, but in spite of being afraid. I stood up to bullies, got smacked down and then got back up again, gained best friends, lost best friends and so on – do you remember? Sometimes all this and more occurred in one recess period!

I recently heard that some schools were doing away with recess altogether. What a shame. ┬áRecess gives us a break – gives us time to process what we read and learn even as adults. It helps us to assimilate information because we assimilate information not only with our minds but with our bodies also.

Everyone should have a little recess in their adult life also. I’m not saying go out and fight bullies and hang upside down (necessarily ­čÖé ) – but allow yourself to follow your heart, break loose from being a serious adult, even for just a little while.

I have been having an extended, unexpected holiday break these past few weeks. It has been three weeks today since I lost my job. Living on the edge (not knowing what tomorrow may bring or NOT bring) isn’t always fun like recess. I have had days of feeling tremendous anxiety over the unknown, fear and even panic. Being a single, middle-aged woman with no job, no close family to depend upon, and not a lot of money isn’t a lot of fun. I guess this is what retirement must be like? LOL

The first few days I didn’t know what to do with myself. I had always gotten up, gotten ready and gone to work like clockwork. I sat and worried a bit and then cried some but eventually I rallied and developed a bit of a routine.

A very important part of my routine is daily recess. Yes, I routinely took walking breaks even when working full time, but now it was different. I had to walk away from the worry, away from the fear and walk towards the unknown. I had to assimilate all the feelings and uncertainty in my mind. Moving my body, leaving the cares on the doorstep and going out for recess has been key. I had to let all the seriousness and being adult go for a while.

I usually take recess about lunchtime – guess that is ingrained in me from elementary school, but it just feels right. We all need to have a recess from adult cares and life sometimes. I encourage you to incorporate a little recess, whatever that may be to you, into your life also.

Oh I hear the bell ringing now – gotta go it’s time for Recess !!! ­čÖé

  1. 1.
    a small space created by building part of a wall further back from the rest.
    “a table set into a recess”
    a period of time when the proceedings of a parliament, committee, court of law, or other official body are temporarily suspended.
    “talks resumed after a month’s recess”
  1. 1.
    attach (a fixture) by setting it back into the wall or surface to which it is fixed.
    “recessed ceiling lights”
  2. 2.
    (of formal proceedings) be temporarily suspended.
    “the talks recessed at 2:15”

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