I know I am not alone on this one. This social isolation, social distancing, self quarantine, shelter in place has created this bizarre roller coaster of highs and lows. We are on the crazy ride in Willy Wonka’s tunnel of haulinactions trying to navigate stressers we’ve never experienced, adjust to a life with fewer distractions and more time alone with our thoughts and memories.
It started out with friends texting old pictures from boxes of memories they finally had time to look through. Then we all laughed at the memes about our significant others having conference call voices or being the “let’s circle back to that later” guy or jokes about our inconsiderate coworkers.
Under all of the changes and humor and fear I am starting to see something I don’t believe any of us were prepared to process. This new found time with our thoughts, without distractions, without the hustle and to-do’s we’ve convinced ourselves had to get done has left space for the stuff we hid in the back of our minds. The stuff we pushed aside and just stayed busy to avoid addressing. The memories that don’t feel as great this time around as they did 25 years ago. The missing attention and praise we found solis in while we shined in the spotlight trying to validate our purpose or career.
It’s not all bad stuff we hide away, it could be passions and loves we let fade in the rear view to make time and space for what we thought was more important. It could be the rekindling of friendships you knew would always be there but you admittedly have not given the time or attention you should. It could be a the random text from the strained relationship that you’ve always kept at arm’s distance that has left you feeling unsettled. You may have taken to heart those posts on social media about the world literally stopping for you to figure out where your priorities are and you may be frantically or purposely starting to reevaluate aspects of your life.
I’d be willing to bet whatever you are sitting with currently it was not what you thought you’d have occupying your mind three months ago.