I think that those people who go the hardest get smacked down the hardest.
Our 9yo is that, exactly. Always into things full throttle, he has seen no sense in resting. In fact, at the beginning of every break from school (be it summer or other holiday breaks), he will break down into tears at bedtime if he feels that he didn’t squeeze the very life out of every minute of that day. I remember feeling that same way, well into my 30s, and would wake up in the wee hours of the morning thinking, “Oh no! I didn’t do enough!”
But he showed me something different this time. He came down with a gnarly case of strep on Sunday morning, meaning that there was a wait for relief until a Monday doc appointment, which gave that stuff an extra tough grip on him. He was flattened. And this child, who hasn’t taken regular naps since the age of two, has taken daily naps for the last four days. He has said things like, “I think I should stay low-key today,” and, “If I play outside for 45 minutes, will you remind me to come in and rest a bit?”
He’s decades ahead of me of understanding the whole rest thing. (I understand it now, mind you. I can rest with the best.)
So there I was, all book-smart and life savvy, being schooled on balance by my kid.
Keeping it real, though, we are now past the “balance” part and have flown straight into “I’m feeling better and a little mean” part. I can always tell when they’re coming out of the sickly fog when they start the orneriness and feistiness with each other. (I think they’re taking cues from the animals…)
Back to life as we know it. ;)