I went on all the planes in the last few months that I could not go on during the pandemic, throwing petty fists each time.
Each takeoff and landing reminding of the jitters, each meal and glass of wine a part of a blurry dream, waking me up in places I had flutters for, for what seems like ages ago. Each long haul, I’m reflecting on how time slowed to a pace that makes the last two years, utter nonsense. What even was 2020 other than tear-filled confusion? 2021 was a tease, and 2022 has had its own set of miseries. The mid-twenties crisis for my generation has had a fabulously ugly start.
COVID took many real lives and many parts of lives — it took a part of mine and replaced it with something that I grew into as the new normal.
Something that is more comforted at the still of my own home, something that has lost the need to seek attention for every hobby she ever picked up, something that found two priorities and not forty, something that is perhaps, milder, quieter, emptier.
I’ve also made intentional changes, of course. I’ve upgraded from Coors to cabernets, from a hand me down car to my own ride, from 110 sq ft to 720, from counting every dollar to spending freely for those I care for — making decisions on who I even care for. Being an ‘adult’, lmao.
but walking through New Bond Street or Nachalat Binyamin makes me wander if it even all happened, and where my other part went to die, if it did.
And now the older self is picking and choosing at her older self. She’s unsure whether this drink with an acquaintance is going to be worth it. She’s burning out trying to be that sleep-deprived ball of energy, filled with mostly harmless extroversion and pure joy of company. She misses the silence and the stillness that once haunted her. She misses independent adventure, but also worries if regaining it will cause relapse.
In this blizzard of self-questioning, I’m defaulting to what my mother taught me best to do — ruthless, ruthless prioritization of what matters and what will bring results. Finding a goal, any goal, that will bring me the sweet feeling of self-proclaimed achievement and success. It’s yet again a new normal that I need to ground myself in, to yet again explore and find the skin that I am comfortable in.
and this time, I’m not the sad-eyed child that needs to be held reluctantly, but rather one that recognizes that I need to be held, and wants to be held tightly for the rainy nights to pass.