In Some Other Life | 4.4.21
The Sunday Edition
How can seventeen months feel like an entirely different life? How can time, something we invent in our own desperate attempt to make sense of the way all things pass us by, race and rush so swiftly we don’t even notice the gap between then and now? We were two with arms around one another, we were two on the shore of some far off loch, only days into hand fasting and vows spoken into rain and Autumn fog. Now we’re here, now we’re ages from that riverbank, that shoreline, those people still lost in the soft haze of elation and a heart content. We lost a year, all of us, and I wonder if I’m alone in feeling this way, this strange confusion when I look back at those days before the world fell apart and wonder if it was all imagined. We lost a year, and we’ll have to figure out how to get it back, or at the very least, we’ll have to figure out what it means that we never will. In some other life, we continued on, and I wonder who we’d be right now.
I ask you now, you who read this a year from when all this madness began, I ask you and I wonder aloud: Who are you now that you were not before? What have you lost? What have you gained? What have you learned of yourself in the strife and uncertainty that spilled like paint on the white page of a year? Are you happier now, are you more free? Are you broken in ways you don’t know how to fix, are you lonely?
How can time do this to us, how can it shift and steal? A year gone, four seasons risen and fallen and we’re back to where we began but nothing is the same, and I wish to know if it ever will be, again? Will we ever be, again?
Speak to me of you, of the ways this trip around this glowing ball of heat has transformed what matters to that heart in that chest of yours? Let’s connect on this, let’s reach out to one another and see that while different, we are probably so very much the same. Different boats, same sea, the lot of us. We all feel the waves, but how they toss our ships is so very different. Tell us of your storms.
Arm around shoulders
on some distant riverbank,
in some other life.
Haiku on Life by Tyler Knott Gregson
Song of the Day
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I am not at all the same person I was a year ago. My world was changed by a traumatic injury just weeks before the pandemic took hold of our lives, and turned our little snow globes upside down.
I'm not one who collects a lot of close friends - I'm guarded and prefer to keep that number small to limit those who know my deepest thoughts, fears, joys, pain. In the last year, political trash has shown me true colors of people, some of which have a hateful streak laid bare for the world to see. Ive lost friends as a result, as I can't abide hate. As I worked through my personal trauma, I had someone who ghosted me and never offered an explanation, yet we move in similar circles so we continue to cross paths regularly. Someone who i was a very close friend I confided in withdrew, and when questioned, claimed I ignored her when her life was difficult - I had no idea because she had shut the world out.
So no, I am not the same person I was, and I'm still processing what that means looking ahead. I'll keep putting one foot in front of the other, and I'll find my way.
Ever since I turned 18, (I’m 25 now) and long before that probably, I’ve been looking for my next escape, my next trip, runaway, adventure— whatever we want to call it.
After I got out of university— I was never i one place for long. I traveled, I worked all over the world in various jobs, I made incredible memories and I also got hurt in every way imaginable — but I kept running because that’s what I knew how to do.
I sometimes traveled with my twin sister, and in summer of 2019 we took our last overseas trip. We both had a sinking, definitive feeling that it was the last time we would go to europe. I remember writing in my journal “I have to go before the borders close”— before the world showed any indication of trouble.
A part of me now thinks we felt it coming, we’ve always had feelings before things happen but for the longest time, we didn’t trust our intuitions.
I’ll never really know though.
Then, March 2020.
The world shut down the week of our birthday, it’s silly, but if we’re talking about things we lost, I feel like we lost our birthday. A lot of people forgot and we didn’t feel like celebrating.
My older parents went from living lives in the community to being scared of this new invisible monster. My sister and I moved back home to take care of them, and honestly each other— and the first few months were hard.
I could spend pages talking about the bad things, but today— I really want to talk about the good.
My family is closer than we’ve ever been. My sister and I are best friends now, and we go to each other for everything. We’ve all learned a level of patience I’ve never seen before.
Having spent a year inside my head, I’ve been able to process trauma that happened pre-pandemic that I honestly never thought I would be able to move on from.
I work in theatre, and that’s still gone, but while it has been gone I’ve had to turn elsewhere to make a living.
It’s challenged me and frustrated me but I’m making it work. Humans have an incredible way of overcoming just about anything, and I see all of my friends fighting tooth and nail to keep creating, keep going.
I wrote two books last year, I’ve gotten to a point where I believe my writing may actually support me— I’ve gotten to a point where I believe I actually deserve it, which turned out to be the hardest part.
I’ve spent every day with my family, like we’re living in some Jane Austen novel, and I’ve learned that happiness isn’t found in running away.
Don’t get me wrong, as soon as this is all over, I’m flying across the world, but it won’t be running away anymore— it will be running towards.