This is Not the Break You Asked For

By Tara Levy

2020 is the turducken of crises, and I’m riding it out on my couch.


Don’t get me wrong. I’m working hard. I’m busy. I have deadlines. I usually meet them. But it’s different now. I have a new lens to survey my workload and world.


I didn’t realize my perspective and priorities had shifted until the HERdacity staff asked how I could be so chill in the midst of all this. I laughed. But then I realized they were serious, so this blog post is my answer.


  1. I am doing what I do and letting others do what they do.

I am not an epidemiologist. I do not have a degree in public health. I am not going to solve the technical science of the pandemic. No matter how many articles or stats I read.

So I am trusting the experts to do their best work on this, and I’m doing my best work on my stuff.


  1. I am being nice to myself.

I like sweets. I like movies. I like reading. I like crafting. I like staying up late and sleeping in. I like spending time with my teenage son—and he still likes spending time with me!

I’m enjoying all of these things. Some of them, I’m likely overdoing. Oh well.


  1. I am forgiving myself.

That “Oh well” I just wrote? I’m doing a lot of that. I am accepting that I am living in a constrained situation, and some things just have to give.

Thank goodness for yoga pants. They both give and forgive.


  1. I am making use of all the time.

The time I used to spend on carpools, errands, time between meetings, waiting for people who were running behind or apologizing for running behind myself? I can use that time in better ways now. And one of the best ways to use it is to relax. I don’t know when my world will be able to pause like this again, so I am using my found time to take a breather and rest-up for whatever comes next.


When my son and I went on the Harry Potter Studio tour, I was heart-broken to not find a time-turner necklace in the gift shop. The idea of stopping time for everyone while I got to get things done had been one of the most alluring bits of magic in those books for me. Somehow this pandemic has given me that time-turner. And it’s even more magical because instead of just catching up and fixing something that went wrong, I am getting to rest.


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