What is it about being human that makes us unsatisfied, regardless of what we have accomplished, what we have, who loves us and so on? We are always striving, always looking for something else, perpetually dissatisfied with our lot.
Or maybe that’s just me.
I have a good life. Supportive husband, new home, sunshine on most days, and a dog who loves me even when I’m ignoring her in favor of my laptop, notebook, or the latest novel I’m reading. But a vague sense of unease always seems to encroach upon my otherwise wonderful life, like a cloud on an otherwise sunny day.
I want to be doing more. With my life, with my writing. But right now, I feel off-balance. The scales are slipping, and I'm not sure how to fix it.
With the new home, my attention is diverted by home improvement projects. I’ve had to get used to the painfully irregular habits of contractors and try to fit my writing around their schedules. It’s been murder on my productivity. And I have to wonder how much of that is my fault.
As I write this Thursday afternoon, I am sitting at a table at my local coffee shop after nearly two weeks on lockdown at the new house to ensure the contractors could get access to the parts they needed to get to and so I could answer any questions they had as they did their work. But finally (finally!) I was able to get out of the house and ride my bike to the coffee shop. Sure, my route is at least twice as long now. And twice as hilly – my thighs are quaking with fear of the ride home even as I write this.
But it doesn’t matter, not if it means I get to write uninterrupted for a couple of hours. Away from the contractors, away from the dog, away from the books upon books I haven’t read, away from the home improvement projects each room needs. Now that I finally have the new home we’ve been saving up for years to own, I realize it is just one more enormous distraction in an already cluttered life.
I’ve been trying to come up with other means of reestablishing equilibrium in my life. Trying out different rooms of the new house to write in. Different times during the day (depending on contractors). Different WIPs. Slowly, slowly, I’m starting to find my rhythm in this new place, in my new set of circumstances.
But I’m still dissatisfied.
I guess I can only channel that energy into my writing to help me get words down on the page. I have to believe I will adapt. I will achieve. I will balance out.
I will find my bearings once more. Bear with me, and while you are at it, offer up your own tips for finding balance in an off-kilter world.
Can you go home again?
1 month ago