April Jeppson: If you can take a break this weekend, do it

Published 8:45 pm Friday, September 2, 2022

Every Little Thing by April Jeppson

Happy Labor Day weekend!

April Jeppson

As a child I always enjoyed long weekends with my family. If you’ve read my articles, you may already be familiar with Wild Rice Days. If not, it’s when my little northern Minnesota town of 400 really comes to life. As a youth, I loved walking through my town and eating cotton candy and going on rides until I threw up. That’s not just an expression, there’s actually many stories of how I tried to be stronger than my motion sickness. 

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I’m heading up north this weekend to enjoy the annual celebration with my family. In recent years I’ve made a conscious effort to go home for the weekend. My children enjoy the parade, and we all enjoy the activities and food. It’s like the end of summer hoorah! Thanks for being great summertime, we’ll see you next year.

I look forward to this trip. I look forward to running into classmates and spending time with relatives. I look forward to the slower pace that small town life brings. I know Albert Lea isn’t a huge metropolis, but we do have three McDonald’s. Where I’m from, you have to drive a good 25 minutes to get a Big Mac.

Labor Day was set aside to celebrate and honor those who labored and served and paved the way. Promoted by Unions, it was a chance to say thank you to all those people who worked so hard in often grim conditions. I may not be working in a coal mine for 12 hours a day, but I am thankful for the long weekend. 

I enjoy work. I like helping people. I often lose track of my day and spend way too much time and energy at the office. For the most part, it doesn’t bother me one bit. But every once in a while I can feel the weight of it all. It just hits me out of nowhere. I need a break. 

It hit me today. 

Someone had a question. Someone else needed help with something. There was an upset person on the phone that wanted to talk to me. So and so could no longer work their shift. Oh, and if you have a minute can we talk?

If you know me, you could have read the expression on my face from a mile away. April’s about to lose it. To everyone else, I tried my best to hide it. The only thing that got me through was knowing that I had a three-day weekend ahead of me. 

I know 120-some years ago this day wasn’t intended to give workers like me a day off. However, I’m super glad that we have it. I’m not going to take this extra day for granted. I’m going to rest and recover and fill my cup. I’m going to return to work next week renewed and ready to take on all the simple stresses in my life. Happy Labor Day!

Albert Lean April Jeppson is a wife, mom, coach and encourager of dreams. Her column appears every Saturday.