These past several days have been so busy, so ripe with tasks and opportunities, that I find myself wondering if I’m allowed to stop plucking for a moment and catch my breath. I steep a mug of green tea—a sneaky attempt to ease myself out of late afternoon coffee dependence—and simply sit. It feels strange, and not twenty seconds go by before I’m antsy. Do something! the motivational speaker in my brain urges. Write something! Clean something! Finish something! Be all you can be! I wish I could punch her.
I just want to be. Not to be all I can be, not to be productive or witty or any one of a thousand admirable adjectives, but just to exist. Memories have been weighty burdens lately; I could do without them for awhile. Responsibilities too. I imagine this is what drives normal people to take beach vacations, the prospect of lying under sun and salt spray and forgetting everything else. (When I go to the beach? I stay in the shade all day reading novels unless I’m there with offspring, in which case cleaning sand from crevices factors in significantly.)
Of course, instead of disassociating from the present, I’m writing about it. This defeats the point, I’m sure, but I always feel more settled when I can give sentence structure to my emotions. Plus, a little bit of introspection goes a long way toward reminding me that the present is worth sticking around for. I actually do like the heft of goals and the importance each minute takes on when I’m busy, and I even like needing a late afternoon caffeine boost to wrap up a day well-packed. If the motivational speaker in my head doesn’t shut up soon, however, I’m taking off for the beach and leaving both novels and green tea behind.