I've been sick this week, sicker than I care to admit... to admit to myself or to anyone else, really.
Defenses are down when you get sick. All the I'm tough. I can take care of myself. I can handle anything nonsense disappears and you just want someone else to take care of you.
The hours in bed, spent lying there because you have no choice, are in turn boring, restful, painful, and then... at a certain point, you lose track of it all and you just... listen.
Normally, I don't allow myself time to listen. My day is scheduled from alarm to nightcap and I admit I like it that way. Time off scares me, as it should; no one knows exactly what they'll find there.
I was forced to listen this week... both body and mind needed time, it seems.
We aren't supposed to live this way. It's too much, the constant gogogogogo and the drive to SUCCEED and the never being able to say 'no!' for fear of missing out... not of missing something fun per-say, but of losing some opportunity...
I need a different measure of success, and that seems hard, if not impossible... because what narrative do we use when the entire script is something that feels completely crazy? How did I get to point where, on a Sunday afternoon, I feel like I don't have 10 minutes to stop in a coffee shop?
"Hi. I'm human, and I have limitations." Why is that so hard to say?
I should have time to read. I want to be able to watch a movie or go to a museum without guilt. It's certainly easier over the summer, but even the summer is pretty darn booked, and the months will quickly fly into years; time will escape.
It's not just me, I know that (and I'm sure I have it pretty easy in comparison to many), but that doesn't make it any better. Success should feel peaceful, I think.
I don't have the solution. In a perfect world, I'd be down in Louisiana, or up in Vermont, or... anywhere my friends are -- and we'd create the things we create, together. That sounds ridiculous, I know, but that was the idea behind starting the Pikes Falls Chamber Music Festival, and that little idea resulted in something really wonderful. Sometimes, things work out.
It's this: A big part of life is about shared experiences; if we're all too busy to even make eye contact, well... what's the point?
As always, we need the downs to feel the ups, and I don't think I would have it any other way. Now, rested and almost healthy... smiling at opportunities, but also trusting myself enough to know when to stop grinding the pepper mill.