We're at that weird point of the summer where, in a normal year, I'm enjoying the time off. I'm in the midst of projects, maybe teaching summer school, definitely partaking in my fair share of sunny shenanigans. We've had picnics and movie nights, rooftop drinks, bridge walks. We've gone to free concerts, all of the museums, visited every new bakery. There have been lots of tacos. I'm almost ready to go back to work, but then I find another show on Netflix that I haven't seen yet or more goods to be baked, so not really.
But this is not a normal summer. In fact, summer has gone on for far too long. The forever-vacation, that started in March, has become my own personal bell jar. I spend most of my days in the same athlesiure shorts. I had to retire the matching HOMEBODY sweatshirt at the beginning of June but the shorts have become sort of like a quarantine uniform. I obsessively check my emails, I can't sleep. I fall silent. I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead; I lift my eyes and all is born again. Sometimes the world does feel like a bad dream.
But we're slowly getting back into the swing of real-life. Not that I have any idea what that will look like but--it's official--I am Mrs. Ziskin, 8th grade ELA teacher. And I couldn't be more excited for using my new name in this new classroom. And, how lucky am I, to spend my days with my favorite person?! When I left our old school, Jordan and I mourned the end of our together-days: We were afraid it was the end of something magnificent. All we wanted was to capture and bottle the way it felt to be able to walk into the room and see our person, whenever we needed to. Send a text and they appear. To share lunch, snacks, laughs. And, somehow, less than a month later, we were back at it: no more than five seconds away from one another. Sneaking snacks on Zoom calls, mid-day cuddle breaks, making tea.
But then the weekend hits and it feels so much like the weekdays. Only there are less emails. And, suddenly, you realize you've already done everything you needed to do this week. Where weekends used to be a catch-all, now it's dropped time. And the courses I've taken, the books I've read, the planning I've gotten done--none of it happens fast enough or feel productive enough. The world, for the first time, lacks purpose. The hours hold less meaning.
I try to enjoy it while I can, knowing this--like everything--is fleeting. I have a hand-full of gratitudes that are as consistent as the days of the week (Jordan, exercise, mom, wedding plans, tea) and something, every day, that grounds me.
I take a deep breath and listen to the old brag of my heart. I am, I am, I am.
This is Me:
My name's Melissa. I'm the girl with her hands in her journal.