Why does reentry take me so much longer than it used to?
We arrived home from a week’s vacation in Bar Harbor on Sunday, and I took my sister Laura to the airport on Monday morning. It is now Tuesday and I still feel foggy and scattered.
Who am I?
Where am I?
What is my life about?
I’ve managed to make lists and pick up necessities at the supermarket, but this life doesn’t yet feel like it belongs to me.
I question everything: Why was I doing this? Do I need to keep doing it?
Part of me wants to daydream the day away, or nap.
I even thought of not writing any more of these little personal essays. I could stop writing, stop painting, stop everything.
But would I still be me?
While in Bar Harbor, I did quite a bit of reading—sitting outdoors with a breeze—watching the occasional deer or red fox who came by to visit. The book I read was A Brief History of Everything by Ken Wilbur—a philosopher who integrates psychology, science, and spirit.
Laura and I spent a lot of time outdoors reading, meditating, and discussing the books we read. When you read a book by Ken Wilbur, you can’t help but investigate how it applies to your own life.
Does the right book come along at the right moment in our lives? It was Paramahansa Yogananda’s Autobiography of a Yogi that came to me at fourteen. Catcher in the Rye at sixteen. Crime and Punishment at nineteen.
We didn’t just sit around reading in Bar Harbor. We played a lot of tennis. We took hikes. We explored the tide pools.
It was the kind of life I could keep doing if I wanted to: take an early morning walk, join a tennis group, spend hours reading and contemplating every day.
But my life has always been about work—even when not working to earn a living. Accomplishing things—achieving—has always been a priority.
Is it time for a change?