Who Will I Become When Life Begins Again?

This experience has forever changed me — the person I was may look a little different after quarantine.

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Albert in temporary new country life.
Albert in temporary new country life.

I never thought I would say this.  I don’t miss my old life so much.  I don’t miss the hustle and bustle of NYC that I used to thrive in.  

I’m wondering who I now am? I’m wondering who I am becoming?  They are questions I have often thought about.  I thought about it when I got divorced. I thought a lot about it during my Cancer journey.  I thought about it throughout my three-year battle that included treatments, side effects, and so many challenges and complications.  I thought I found myself after all of that and after a horrible breakup.   I, for sure, thought I found myself through a four week mostly solo international travel experience last summer. 

Now this.  I’m living with my ex, his wife, her ex and kids.  I’ve now thought about who I will become after all of this ends.  Where will we go from here?  Is it safe to go home?  How will that work?  How will it mirror our old life and combine our new life?

I do miss the people from before.  I miss the connections.  I miss dinners with friends.  I miss walks and time with my mom. I miss random run-ins on the street.  I miss being in a sweaty room at Soul Cycle with people I’m used to seeing multiple times each week.  I miss going on dates.  I miss meeting new people.  I miss my in-person work events.   I miss real school and my kids basketball coaches and teams.  I miss seeing friends at games. I miss touch. 

I wonder when this is over, will I miss my ex-husband?   Will I miss living and working out every day with his wife?  Will I miss her ex-husband and their daughters?  Will I miss being with kids all day long?  Will I miss the life of the past few months that has been a beautiful mix of randomness, uncomfortableness and loneliness combined with a full house filled with daily fun-filled bizarrely blended daily family activities and dinners. Will I miss calm country walks and deep phone talks?  Will I miss the quiet time and the endless availability of conversation?  Will I miss waking up to the smell of coffee already brewing and the country views?  Will I miss cooking for a full house? Will I miss the craziness of quarantine or crave the quiet?

As a divorced mom who loves people and connection and comes from a big family, is there something to co-living?  As a busy working mom who has never wanted to cook, will I continue to enjoy time spent in the kitchen experimenting and the joy of others loving my creations?  How will I continue bonding over new at-home experiences with others?   How will we remember to walk around when it isn’t about getting from one place to another.   

Virtual happy hours with friends have become more purposeful.  Meetings for work are thoughtful and more meaningful than ever.  Distance dating requires getting to know someone in a way we haven’t done before.  Kids are connecting, running and laughing without technology.  

Everything is deep and deliberate.  Life is different.  I don’t want it to be the same.  I am excited to see who we all become.

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