To Peacefully Unfurl
About five years ago, I was burnt out. I had an end date in mind, a goal to work towards and at some point it was simply survival in a way. I was doing a lot and it was all things worth doing, and it helping keep me going. And that day came when the projects were done and I had no obligations beyond my daily job; I was free to do whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. Perhaps I thought it might just all fall away with the goals complete, but that was wishful thinking. My brain and body had become used to a certain level of stress and activity and the weekends were often filled with unhappy relaxing – a feeling that I was being unproductive. I often felt guilty for not doing enough, for staying home, for watching TV and yet I didn’t want to do anything more. I was tired, I slept a lot and I very gradually, over the next year, let go of some of that driven habit.
It has never left me though, and it may be a part of my nature. There is always a task or project or activity to be done, even if they are all worthwhile and only for myself. For the past several months I have been attempting to tackle the great immigration package project. For months I have been working on it or rather more often, not working on it, even though it is constantly the thought in the back of my mind. I have worked to change this in the past few months, employing various tactics to rally myself to the task, and not feel guilty when it wasn’t always achieved. Along the way, I’ve spent time alone, a lot. This is not necessarily new to me, but these last few months, I’ve craved it. Craved quiet and no plans, no obligations and nothing but walks and reading books to fill my day; I still feel this way, though I haven’t become a hermit, I have just come to deeply enjoy those times.
Five years. And here I am realizing what exactly is blossoming: the ability to appreciate and live in the present; in small doses perhaps, but enjoyment nonetheless. The burn out has definitely gone. Maybe I didn’t really see it leave, skulking off as I slept in without a care. Maybe it was some time ago, but I am only feeling the benefits now, the blossoming after a long winter. I know I am in a special place right now, at a precipice before change. My life will be a coupled one before long, and in the meantime, I am enjoying the single moments; the do-as-I-want alone moments. Both states are good and desirable; it is about enjoying each state while it is here, knowing that it will not always be this way necessarily.
I have often found it easy to live in the present while travelling – being far from daily life and the relentless planning and organizing. It’s definitely possible to live in the present while in daily life, but I find it much harder. Unfurling, blossoming is not yet to bloom, but the recognition that the process is indeed occurring.