I might be one of the few who took that whole stay-at-home thing as a direct order to do what exactly what I wanted to do anyway- stay home with my people. Slow down the schedule. Scale back the commitments. Settle into a less fussy existence.
Now things are picking back up. Nothing is normal, of course, but normal is only a setting on the dryer and I’ve never been much for laundry, anyway. So call it what you want, but getting back out there and picking up the pace is wearing me out. Reentry is exhausting for this introvert, and I’m just trying to set the pace in my new lane.
I’m visiting more friends and family. I’m running more errands. I’m doing the shopping. I’m tending to all the things and all the people and I love it. Also, these things require mental energy and at the end of the day, I am toast.
You might say I’m over-peopled. I love my people, but jumping right back in feels a bit like being pushed into the deep end, only to find out the water is 5 degrees cooler than I expected. That is to say, there’s a shock factor and I need some time to acclimate. Just give me some time to acclimate.
So I’m doing the things and loving the people and finding my balance. I’m claiming quiet days with my family, not filling every available moment with busyness, and taking time to recharge. And I’m hanging on to the unfussy existence that I love so much. Balance. I think it’s a thing. It’s not a static thing, but it’s a thing.
Re-entry can be a challenge and that’s okay. Experiencing some turbulence as we all find our new routines is completely normal. Feeling tired or drained isn’t a problem, it’s just my body saying what needs to be said: “Hey, pace yourself. You can do it, but you don’t have to do it ALL right now.”
If you’re an introvert, give yourself grace and set the pace. If you love an introvert, give some grace. All the grace. Respect the new pace. And maybe give it one more sprinkle of grace.
For more stories of happily standing in the awkward middle of life, love, and parenting, follow Happy Like This by Mandy McCarty Harris.