Today I have had someone in mind while writing this post. Though I will ground it in my own experiences of the last few months, I hope it resonates in some way.
I think back to 2019. Lost in this modern world and dazed by the pace at which life was going. Hanging onto the tow hitch of a runaway vehicle; swerving, manic and unpredictable. Holding onto it with everything we have left and watching our sweaty, overworked fingers slip, like a drama playing out in slow motion and losing grip of the vehicle we so desperately wanted to be in. Failure we thought. And we let go and tumbled away, bloody and broken.
2020 came, and we hardly noticed. Crawling through the aftermath of December, weak and empty of everything we had believed was important. Nothingness became the norm. Just move forward. Make money. Be a success. Manage your time. Work harder. Work more. Be better. Just keep on going. This is our life and these are the times. Deal with it because we are all doing it, this is 2020.
It had been like this for many years prior to 2020 – this future-driven, tech savvy, over-worked, material-loving, disconnected, flash in a blur way of living! It had steadily eroded us to the point that we no longer recognised ourselves. We were lost without a map. And we were so tired, we no longer cared about caring.
While the ‘Lockdown’ has been vehemently debated everywhere, I’d like to simply focus on what it has meant for me. Autumn was closing in and I needed ‘quiet’ and ‘time’ to be alone with myself. I’ve needed to go deep into my thoughts of summer time memories; reflect on them, assess them and sometimes change my narrative to one that serves me and who I truly am. There has been less ‘noise’ which has allowed me to think and listen to that voice that is so often drowned out by external expectations, opinions and motives. I’ve focused on the ‘now,’ taking one step at a time and have been recognising the ‘journey’ being ‘life’ and not the ‘destination.’ It’s given me clarity, direction and a map for a plan that will require courage and higher perspective. This time for me has been an enlightening journey. So much has happened these last few weeks that have connected the most unlikely people. Though it seems we are all isolated and alone, I have never felt more ‘connectedness’ than what I have felt these last few weeks. It’s been a rollercoaster of emotions but at the same time, it’s teaching me to ‘trust the process.’ And most importantly, it gives me hope.
While I bitterly complained about lockdown, homeschool (!) and the fact that Cyril told us no more wine for sale, among many other things – I have breathed a deep sigh of relief. It’s been simpler. The calendar of commitments, meetings and events has been wiped clean and we’ve had time to focus on what we want to focus on. In fact it’s felt a bit like expat life again which as you well know, I loved! There has been a lot less, and less is certainly more!
This time has been unique for all of us. Though it has been very difficult in parts, I think it’s been much needed in the way of finding our own truth. For some of us, we have arrived at a fork in the road and we are faced with a choice. I hope that this time of reflection is not in vain. This wild, dark and tumultuous journey we have been on must count for something. I believe it is the beginning of a new chapter, a happier one, whatever that is. Not necessarily an easier one, but one that is true to our beautiful, loving, deserving self.