I am cherishing my quiet time in quarantine. To the depths of my soul I am thankful that I have time to stop, to reflect and to catch up with parts of myself that have been on the run for so long that now I feel that I might have a chance to get to know them again.
And I am experiencing an overwhelming sense of relief that we have all been required to slow down together.
There is a reassuring bond in that notion and in our mutual isolation. I am also painfully aware of those in crisis, who have lost their jobs and are ill during this pandemic and my heart goes out to you all. Like so many other artists, I have lost almost all of my income. However I am fortunate that my husband still has his job and so far, we are both well. For that I am profoundly grateful. My job here in sharing with my readers is to help find inspiration and healing during one of the most trying times in our history.
By nature, my life has the choreographed pattern of being on the move. As a freelance singer and voice teacher, I am continually making the drive from Greenwich, CT to New York City, organizing space to teach, racing back at break neck speed to teach in Greenwich, flying to London several times a year to teach, conducting two different choirs… and, oh yes, did I mention that I am also the producer and host of a weekly radio show that is dedicated to the arts? I am privileged to be able to live this satisfying life. But it is a life that is sustained on adrenaline. Every professional musician out there knows what I am talking about. The rush is intoxicating. The exhaustion from the organizational standpoint alone is draining. Do I love it? Yes. Am I enjoying my downtime while in quarantine? A resounding, yes!
While I realize that I am more fortunate than most in that we still have one steady income, I am finding this time in our mutual isolation to be liberating. I have settled in and taken the time for generous reflection and soul searching. I find myself to be contented. I have enjoyed my right to be quiet with my thoughts and to change the tempo of my actions.
I am sleeping well. And my creativity is thriving in dreamscapes at night that are vivid and unbridled. Like many during the quarantine, I have no choice but solitude.
I have no choice but solitude. And unlike many, I am secretly hoping for more time to be allowed for this pace. It has allowed me to clean closets and declutter my mind at the same time. My own music making is not woven around someone else’s schedule, it is purely mine.
And amazingly, I have even started to cook. Those who know me well will understand that I regard cooking as a form of Hell. I even have an embroidered pillow in the dining room that says “My Favorite Thing To Make For Dinner Is Reservations!” However, I have now dared to make it an art form of my own creation rather than grabbing a pre cooked meal at one of the local cuisine masters in Greenwich. I have settled in to a relaxed schedule of extra time with my husband, who is working remotely at home. And I have embraced my home with new and loving eyes. But perhaps most importantly, I am writing. My mind is quiet and the words come to me now resembling a musical phrase.
In short, I have looked at the flip side. Like turning over an old 45 record. I remember buying 45’s when I was a kid and many times the “B” side was the stronger song. Suddenly I feel as if it’s okay to “live” the flip side. Who of my friends would have ever thought that I would rise to the occasion as a cook? I want to explore this side a little more. I want the time and space to allow myself to stay here.
The flip side has always been smiling at us hoping that we will give it a look. Hoping that we might walk through the mirror to see life from the other side. The flip side has been patient with us all. It sees that we have been on the run for so long that we cling to our habits as a means of holding ourselves together. I am eyeing the flip side with a smile…I may linger a while longer after the pandemic is over.
I will say to you all now, that the potential in the transformative power of the flip side is real.