I made a date to go out for lunch with a colleague of mine once we’d both been vaccinated and waited through the two-week, post-vac window.
When that day finally arrived I was surprised at how clunky the visit was, how jittery I was by being with someone in person. When I saw her, I didn’t hug her. I didn’t even really go near her for a long while. When she finally hugged me, I could not relax into it. I was okay once we sat down to eat at an empty table, but as soon as another family sat down beside us I popped up like a Jack-in-the-box searching for a table further away. This was instinctual; my flight response was fully activated, which also meant that I didn’t really enjoy the end of the visit because I never really calmed down again. I went home and had to take a nap immediately. Wow, if this is what it feels like to come back together, it is gonna be messy. When I read this interview between Krista Tippet and clinical psychologist Christine Runyan, it all began to make a little more sense. Oh, it’s still going to be messy, but at least now we can understand why.
Our Nervous Systems in the Time of COVID, by On Being (dailygood.org)
Continue to be gentle with yourselves friends and allow spaciousness to go slowly as together we navigate the shifting sands of regathering in person.
With Easter hope,