Rat Race

It is slowly dawning on me that we have been staying home now for just over five months, and while I feel that I have been productive I also wonder if I could have done more.
More…doing more…a friend recently pointed out how I am productive even in a pandemic. I started this site, my instagram, my recipe development. I took a Summer course at UVM (more about that in a bit) and received a certificate in Culinary Nutrition. I cleaned the house and did the order pickups and read as many books as I could get my hands on, all the while sending out care packages to friends around the country. Even as I write this it seems like such a small number of accomplishments for nearly half a year.
Yesterday was my first day without any routine at all. My course has ended, we had a lovely visit with family, Jim took a week off for us to spend serious time together, and yesterday was the return to reality. By 2pm I was hand scrubbing out toilet brush holder. Yes, you read that correctly.
So where does this come from? My career was always quite successful, and I am beginning to wonder now if it is because I genuinely believe I could always be doing more. I took each advancement, each transfer, with the idea that I would settle into a new role and really spend time mastering it in earnest. I never settled in though…I was swinging from role to role, location to location, company to company…always doing more. You scrub the toilet brush holder not out of willful productivity, not out of cleanliness, but out of a desperate panic about what your life might look like if you actually slowed down. Will I fall off of this planet if I cease to be moving about so insistently?
Food for thought, is all this post is about. Does the fear of not doing enough, not accomplishing enough, actually come from the feeling of not BEING enough? Introspection and a pandemic fueled quarantine clearly go hand in hand, and as the clock ticks on I am forced to face a surprising fear, not of the nasty virus that has our nation in its clutches, but of the vast amount of space and time ahead of me in which not a single plan dwells.
I would love to hear from anyone who can relate. In the meantime, I’m sure it’s not to early to begin prepping dinner.

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