We’ve been waiting for you. Who would have thought when the fall holidays began that by now COVID would be reaching new records, four thousand Americans would lose their lives to the disease daily, and our beloved Capitol would be the site of a failed coup attempt…in 2021! This is not a political piece, though. There are others far more qualified than I for those. This is our current situation, our daily lives.
The new year finds our humble abode much like last year, but there have been some changes. We remain at home more; working and teaching remotely. After a two week quarantine when my building closed we made the trip to see our also-quarantined oldest and his family. We got our first grandchild hugs since August. There will be no more until we are vaccinated, as I am scheduled to reenter face to face teaching next week. We have been masking up for groceries, but have made some pretty incredible meals while home-bound. We miss restaurants and support our locals but we will eat at home far more often than we used to on the other side of this. Our pets have never been happier. We’ve had time to explore new hobbies and practice old ones. We have watched movies and shows that we never before had time for. We’ve read…a lot.
And after years of threatening and starting, I believe I have started my first book for the last time. It is in its infancy right now but is taking shape in pages of characters, connections, and notes. Research is being done, ideas are forming, and very soon there will be a chapter written. The process will be slow because I do work eight-plus hours per day, but mornings and weekends will add up. Working on this dream after so many years is energizing (not like I have enough energy to take down the Christmas tree or scrub the bathroom, but you know…excitement). Why did I wait? Why did it take almost a year of being close to home to start something I want to do, and have wanted to do since before I can remember?
I know I am not alone in this. We all jumped right into our kitchens and organized closets (not me, but you get the idea). We stocked up on reading material and spent more time watching the news. We changed the way we worked and spent, we eliminated travel, we reconnected with good friends and appreciated our families. Artists found new and creative ways to bring us theatre, movies, and music, perhaps changing those industries forever. But do you have a long-held “someday” dream? Have you used any of this time to build a foundation for it? To nurture or encourage it? No judgement here, but since I have been asking myself why I haven’t, I encourage you to take a socially-distanced step toward the thing or things you really want someday. If you have achieved all you have ever wanted, I applaud you (and kinda envy you). If you have extra time, though, your expertise would be an incredible gift for someone else looking toward similar goals. Take a step if you have the time. The energy will come. To those like me, just getting started or thinking of starting, let’s encourage each other. Every journey begins somewhere. Why not here?