Writing for myself on this blog has been such a test of my commitment skills. Sixty-six days to form a habit is what I always try to remind myself. I’ve done it before I reassure myself when that number intimidates me. You’ve just got to get back into your groove, I whine. But if I am honest, I have noticed that it’s not just the blog that’s taken a back seat. People more educated than I would say this sounds like depression, I would agree, but then I get distracted by this other shiny realisation as we approach Spring. I feel like I’ve got PTSD.
As we approach Spring, the weather is changing. The sweaters and the boots that we once cherished for keeping us warm and snug are now weighing us down with the extra sweat they induce and the uncomfortable scratch they suddenly illicit on our skins. As we approach Spring, the clouds have gathered, reminding us of the approaching threat of the end of winter rains. Was it one, two or three weeks of rain last year? I can’t be sure. I know that it rained. Every day? Okay, maybe not all the days, but for an uncomfortable amount of time it rained. A time I remember because it was before I got my car. Getting to school was a lesson in staying dry when nature doesn’t agree with that idea. I am not sure I passed.
As we approach Spring, I go to school every morning and walk in just as the bell chimes and the kids head to class. The bell leaves some stragglers behind as they water the Tulip buds that line the walk up to the school entrance. The first graders are in charge of these. I think each one has a pod to look after. They run with their little water bottles, wearing their little yellow hats, looking like small flowers themselves. As we approach Spring, I remember that I never got to see these Tulips bloom last year.
As we approach Spring, I remember that I didn’t get to experience Spring at all last year. In Japan, Spring is Cherry blossom season. They’ve built an entire culture around the event of going out to a park, finding a tree with these blossoms, and enjoying a picnic underneath it. As we approach Spring, when I notice my car covered in the remnants of the first rains, I feel my breath catch in my chest because I don’t know what to expect. I’ve never been here before.
As we approach Spring, shops in my area have been told to close early. My coworkers are unconsciously rushing through the syllabus. It’s as if they too remember that school closed very suddenly last year after the bars and restaurants reduced their hours to fend off the corona.
As we approach Spring, why do I think I have PTSD? Simply put, it’s the vibration of anxiety that grows in my gut. It’s the feeling of overwhelming grief at the thought of all we have lost since this time last year. It’s the resentment I feel when my colleague, Mr Small-talk, only talks to me about how the corona is going in South Africa even on days when all I want to do is think happy thoughts and savour another day of being alive.
As we approach Spring, my mind is all over the place; writing is writing; this blog needs some fresh posts, life moves on. I want to blog again with timely weekly posts about the tales of my adventures in Japan. As we approach Spring, the only real adventures are the ones happening in my head.