I was talking to a friend a couple weeks ago. I asked her how she was doing. She said, “Keeping busy.” At the time, I thought nothing of it. Later, it struck me as odd. Who answers “How are you?” with “keeping busy”? Retirees and people waiting for something specific to happen.
Part of this might be the pandemic. Normal is gone. Some people are waiting for things to get back to the old normal, which I don’t believe is coming back. Everything is up in the air. Nobody knows what will happen. And so they wait for…? Spring? The weather has been endlessly, ridiculously cold. That definitely adds to the sense of hibernation. I understand the feeling of wanting to stay home and drink hot chocolate, killing time until the snow melts and it is fifty degrees outside.
This is my friend that graduated law school. I know how many sacrifices she made to graduate. She left Michigan for jobs that pay a living wage. She found work on the east coast. She clawed her way up to a contract job that paid $76k.
And then she got a wolf-dog hybrid. That dog is now her life. The contract ended. She is back in Michigan, living with her daughter, who owns the parents to her pet. The daughter has grown tired of financing her mother and her pet. And now, my friend is “keeping busy.”
Is that all any of us are doing? Keeping busy? I watch my younger co-workers during their lunches and breaks. They spend all their time on their phones, watching videos, playing games, etc. They are keeping busy. Not accomplishing anything, but keeping busy.
I have spent the past few years working on emotional issues. My ultimate goal is to not be devasted and wish for death when ordinary disappointments occur. I know that my feelings come from my childhood and being unwilling to play the role assigned to me by my family: scapegoat. I work on healing and re-mothering myself every day. I know I am making progress. I refuse to just “keep busy.”
I hope to do more with my life than just “keep busy.” Shoot me now if all I am doing is killing time before death.