Have you ever seen the movie, War of the Worlds with Tom Cruise? While it may seem extreme, I feel like I am a character (somewhat reminiscent of my former self) in one of the many scenes of the movie where everything is dust or ash covered, including aspects of myself. The question is, will I be able to clean up properly after the storm? What storm you ask?! Or, is it the proverbial one that we’ve all been immersed in worldwide? Yes, but on a more personal level, the ensuing aftermath of the tempest sums up the almost completion of one of the most difficult working years of my two and a half decade-long career.
On one hand, I feel exhausted, beaten, deflated, and oddly flat. On the other hand, I’m aware that I’m on the brink of soon-to-be elation and a remarkable sense of accomplishment for simply making it through to the other side. It’s a combination like none other before and it leaves me wondering what sort of feelings are left to come out of it all because I know that once my fight or flight system stops firing, there will be a series of aftershocks. I can sense them coming which is good because then I will be better prepared to face and deal with them. I’ve already learned in life that it’s not worth it to try and dodge the uncomfortable things or pretend that they aren’t there. That gets me nowhere fast and/or down the same old path. The only way to the other side is to go through it, right?
I have come to a major realization, and that is this: The past year (or two, really) have forever changed me, much like the world around us, and I know unequivocally there’s no going back. I don’t want to go back in fact and even if I had wanted to, I couldn’t. Something within me has shifted and change is a comin’. The problem is that I don’t know exactly what it will all entail yet and that’s the part that makes me nervous, as would be the case for many people.
Regardless, there is a precipice mounting. I feel as though I see people and things way more clearly than I did before. The problem is that I don’t necessarily like all that I see and it doesn’t sit well with me. If I were my younger self, I would just play the game or try the ignoring one which I alluded to earlier. Now that I’m older, I’m not willing to do either because time is far too precious to me. While minutes and hours have always been important, I obviously didn’t always honour them the way I should have, especially early on in my career. As a middle-age woman nearing her fifth decade on Earth, I no longer have the inclination to even try to learn the ‘rules’, if you know what I mean. I may not know much about how exactly it is that I am to go forward from where I am at, but I have come to the understanding that my steps will need to look differently than they have before.
Change is sometimes uncomfortable, but also necessary since it happens to be the one constant in life. I best embrace it. After all, change doesn’t automatically equate with all things bad. Most times, it actually turns out to be really, really good and that is what I am hoping for. It’s happened to me before, most notably in meeting my husband, thus it surely can happen again. I just need some clarity of sorts similar to what I had back then. My upcoming summer vacation is the PERFECT opportunity for that since I will have less outside ‘noise’ to filter through which is ironic given what is about to happen around me.
You see, restrictions in and around our parts are lifting given that coronavirus numbers have dropped considerably since vaccinations first began. As you can imagine, the energy of the general public is truly bursting at the seams with an impending sense of normalcy in going out and about and resuming once-loved activities. While everyone around me is bubbling over with excitement instead of having to live inside of one, I’m preparing my bubble for some serious peace and quiet.
Thankfully, I know myself well enough to know that quiet is what I want and need most right now. I mean real quiet; not the COVID-19 type of quiet that we have all come to know and loathe or the other kind of quiet that can be eerie or lonely. I am talking about genuine quiet—the kind that replenishes one’s body and soul, and so this time (unlike my younger self), I will honour what my body is telling me and I will let it feel what it needs to in the aftermath of this surreal year and some. Then, I will gratefully move on from it all.
In the meantime, I will just have to learn to be okay with not knowing or needing to know the direction in which everything is going just yet. The eye of the storm is dissipating and I have survived. That is what counts. I am here. In one piece, standing on my own two feet, as a matter of fact. I just need to show up, let be what will be, and be present for myself. My own personal War of the Worlds is over for now, and I can truly breathe in life again without the beast of COVID-19 ruling my each and every day. In the quiet that will come, I hope to become centred, focused and clear. It’s time to let go of being a perpetual victim, like so many of us have been. I am a survivor looking to do more than ‘make it through’ life as we now know it. I want to thrive and the reality is that after this much-needed period of restoration, I will be looking to surround myself with others who wish to do the same whilst being their authentic selves. Cheers to what the future holds! 😊