It took a full week of vacation before I was really on vacation. C’mon, I’m not the only working zombie on the beach who just keeps chugging through emails, logging into the office, adding my two cents’ worth here and there, unable to just let it go, dammit…. Die, working zombie, die!
But seven days in, when my most complex patient was well tucked in to her new oncology bed (handed off to a solid team), and there were no more acute results or possible surprises (like, a few days in, whoops! positive urine culture!) and my opinion on anything just didn’t seem to matter so much, I actually started to relax.
Damn that news app on my iPhone, though. Horror after horror, another mass shooting, another terror attack, hatred and racism and extremism… It’s all very important and there is so much to SAY.
But even with days and days off, even with each news story creating emotion and opinion and ideas inside me, I could not write even one word about it.
Like that dream we all have when we’re running but our legs feel heavy and jellylike, and we can’t actually get anywhere, I just haven’t been able to write. I’m calling it beach inertia, a dreamlike state where one is aware of events, and knows logically what one must do, but any attempt to do so requires painful, massive effort yet yields no result, and so one reaches for that last chilled seltzer in the cooler bag instead.
Of course the days have been filled to the brim with the kids. Let’s face it, when you are one of two adults in charge of two young children, vacation is in quotation marks. But truly there was time, a lot of time where I could have cradled my laptop in the hammock or after dark, and I did not.
Back to work and the grind tomorrow, and I expect a relapse of the writing virus as well.
*This photo was taken at Skaket Beach, in Orleans, MA, at low tide.