pace thyself

Working from home. Remotely. Baby in the House. Far away from Home. Feels like Winter when it’s actually Spring.

Walking around the block feels like the past, the future and nowhere in between. Am I breaking the law? Putting myself, my family, in danger? People in masks. Impressively respectful.

I need air. I need my beach. My dogs. My bed. But I am here and they are there. Near the coast, but not at the coast.

Remote. Like everyone else, I’m dealing. I’m grateful. Believe me, I’m grateful, grateful, grateful that I get to work at home, get to be with my beloved daughter, granddaughter and son-in-law. I get to smell baby breath and watch this little being grow and watch my daughter grow. I am so very blessed. I get to hang out with humans who care about me and I them. In the same apartment. Maybe for a long time.

It’s The Uncertainty.

Then it’s The Resolve: It’s going to be This Way. For a LONG TIME.

So now what? Unpack the bag I packed 2.5 weeks ago expecting to be here for no more than a week? Buy more clothes? I’ve been hand-washing the same grey and black shirts and slacks, and that one pair of comfy shoes I wore on the plane, every day and it’s getting kinda old. I know it’s trivial. I should be ashamed of myself for having such tiny thoughts. But is it time to think about settling in?

Two weeks ago I upgraded my travel size toothpaste thinking I’d be here, at most, two more weeks. Maybe now it’s time to invest in boxed hair dye.

Never having had to endure a weather-related catastrophe, I guess it’s like preparing for, and enduring, a very bad weather event. Hunker down. Stock up. Take out the paints and canvas. Start that 500-page book. Distract yourself from fear.

Work. Not every minute. I don’t have to be a slave to the computer screen, addressing my remote students’ every need. But they NEED me and I need them. (I’m historically lousy at balancing home and work life.) So this is the ultimate test: I need to pace thyself.

Step back. Breathe. Smile. Dance in the sunset, even if it is just a sweet memory for now.

Every day for the unforeseen future I have the privilege of watching a wee baby fall in love with her parents–and me. I am reminded that while the days ahead are uncertain, our commitment to each other is rock solid.

Time to unpack.

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