The world is changing again. Things are really opening back up. Events are starting to happen again. I have been to two so far, one indoors and one outdoors, and it was lovely to see people in person that I had not seen for much of the last year except on a computer screen. We are getting somewhat back to normal. What I’m struggling with is whether normal is something I want to go back to.
When I think about the pace of life pre-pandemic, I see the goodness of the last year and a half. The pandemic wiped my calendar clean. For a month or so, it was pretty empty until we figured out Zoom meetings, and then it slowly began to fill up again. Not entirely though. I booked meetings on weekdays, but evenings and weekends remained wide open for much of last year. We went from being booked on most Saturdays and Sundays to having unscheduled weekends where were could take on any house projects we wanted or just do nothing. Those days and those windows of truly free time have become really precious to me. I am unwilling to let them go.
At the same time, I miss my people. Having seen people a little more these last weeks, I realize just how much I miss my people. I miss the hugs and the shared meals and the laughter. I miss the runs and walks. I even sort of miss the office banter, which feels like a strange thing to say when I have so loved working at home for the last fourteen months. Just today, I reached out to schedule a birthday dinner with a friend I have only seen a couple of times through the pandemic. I am beyond excited to sit down with her again at one of my favorite restaurants that I have not been to in over a year. It is a small thing, but it is a huge thing too.
So what I need to figure out is the balance of putting things back on the calendar where I go places and see the people I love without overbooking myself so much that we lose the space that has become so meaningful to our home life. That is the task before me. That is what I want to do well. And I think I can. Dave and I just need to be really thoughtful about where we go from here.
We have a few things going on this summer. Dave and I are headed to Iowa for a race and some time with family and friends in June. In July, I’m heading to Colorado with some trail running friends. In August, we’ll be running Hood to Coast again with Team Ranch Road 1, which is about the most fun thing ever. It is all good, but I am asking myself: is it just the right amount of getting out and about, or is it too much? Are we maxed out, or do we have capacity for more? We miss travel and our friends and family so much that it’s tempting to book ourselves out like crazy, but I want to be careful about that.
It’s weird to be so focused on protecting our time and space in the face of things returning to normal. If ever I faced a good problem, this is it. I cannot complain about the opportunities or the challenges that lie ahead of us. Given where we are and where we have been, I welcome them. I welcome them all.