I get dressed every day. I wear jeans and t-shirts, earrings, even a bra. I don’t like staying in my pajamas.
During my final quarter of grad school, all I was doing was writing my thesis. I didn’t have classes to teach or attend and my research was all online. I would get up every morning and have my coffee and watch tv on my couch. Then I would shower, get dressed, put on make-up, and sit down at my desk to work.
The desk was behind the couch. But it felt like a transition.
I still like that delineation of “Before” and “During” for my days. It marks the time in my mind even if no one else sees me. (No one else sees me. I don’t go anywhere – except the occasional excursion to a wooded trail to get some exercise.)
I keep my computer in my office space, too. When I have work to do, I work at a desk. I need the discipline of a designated workspace to change my brain over from not working to working. My office is pleasant but the age of Zoom has shown me how blank the walls behind my desk are.
The age of closed stores has taught me that I can only shop for art in person.
I want this space where I come, dressed for the day, to be a place where I craft something meaningful out of words but my creativity isn’t responding to my clutches at normalcy. My personal work has been on hold for weeks. I can write what I’m told to write. I can work for hire.
But the part of my writing where I am the creator? It’s tucked away somewhere. I can’t reach it in its hiding spot. This right here is just the kind of stream of consciousness writing that teachers nudge students to do to get them started. It’s the way writers crawl past writers block. It’s baby steps.
I’m going to hit publish now and put these words out into the world. I don’t deceive myself that they matter much to anyone but me. To me, today, bravely dressed and seated at my desk, they represent a step – a baby step – in the direction of real life.