By Troy Headrick
I want to start with a confession. Lately, I’ve been suffering from a touch of writer’s block. So, much to my delight, while I was just sitting in front of my laptop, the following blog began to take shape in my mind.
I’m in my bedroom, “at work.” It’s Monday, 1:03 p.m., February 1, 2021. In approximately six weeks, I will have been working remotely for a full year.
A few minutes ago, the weirdest thing happened. I was looking at the lovely patterns of light forming on the walls and curtains, created by bright sunshine pouring through the partly opened blinds, and then I asked myself, out loud, “Is any of this real?”
The question was prompted by something approximating an out-of-body experience. It was like I was able to see things perfectly clearly, and everything around me suddenly made absolute sense. There was a rare moment of mental clarity that nearly took my breath away.
I haven’t physically stepped into my workplace since March of 2020. I rarely see anyone other than my wife. I DO SEE tiny people’s faces—sometimes less pixelated, sometimes more—looking out of computer screens toward me. I Skype. I Zoom. I respond to emails. I do these things while wearing a “business casual” shirt, up top, and running shorts, down below. I haven’t shaved in five days.
In such a situation, it’s hard to know what’s real and what isn’t. I mean I’m at work but I’m sitting in the place where I sleep. No one is currently around, but I’m connected to everyone and anyone via the internet. I’m waiting for something to happen on my computer. Hello, is anyone out there? If I turned on my Zoom mic, it’s likely someone would answer, but I won’t do that because there’s no meeting on the schedule for this time and whoever heard me would just think I was being weird or losing it. Like I asked earlier, is any of this real? Does any of this make sense?
I guess I can decide for myself what’s real and what isn’t. When I go back to “the real world” after everyone gets his or her shot (or two), I’ll look at things a little more wisely. I won’t be so naïve. (I’m totally embarrassed by how silly I used to be, and I can actually feel myself blush.) I’ll decide for myself what I want to pay attention to and what I want to blow off. If there’s no really reality, then nothing really matters. Right?
I will no longer give a shit or sweat the small stuff. Hell, it’s all small stuff.
I suddenly feel very powerful but really calm. Yep, I’ll be a different kind of guy when all this is over. I may go ahead and start being a different kind of guy right now. Why not?
Troy Headrick’s personal blog can be found here.