Halfway through the year

by @edent | #

We’re exactly halfway through 2020.

Fuck. It feels like I’ve spent two-thousand-and-twenty days living through the year 2020.

I know how lucky I am to be employed and to be shacked up with a loving spouse. I’m festooned with privilege, but it’s emotionally tough.

Liz and I have spent the best part of four months without leaving our home. We have a small garden, and enough exercise equipment at home to stave off utter madness. I always wondered how I’d cope on a mission to Mars. Turns out, it’s a lot easier than I thought. Video calls with friends are a lifeline. We have enough media to watch until the end of time. And my eReader is heavy with books that I’ll read any day now… I’m not sure if I miss going out. I certainly don’t miss commuting.

Work is complex. I’m immensely proud of everything we’ve achieved this year. But it’s never enough. There’s always the other choice you could have taken. The crushing sense that if you’d only been able to do just a bit more.

I’m also achingly aware that my six-month secondment has now lasted 18 months. There’s a song by The Clash which adequately describes my mood.

At the beginning of the year, I decided that I wanted to publish a new blog post every day. Prat! I’m doing OK so far. I mostly queue up a week’s worth on a Sunday and let them dribble out during the week.

They say that for fulfilment you should spend your money not on possessions, but on experiences. That’s nearly impossible in lockdown. So I’ve been buying stuff. Random crap mostly. Do I love seeing delivery drivers that much? No, it is just a simulation of receiving a gift every day.

One day, perhaps, it will go back to normal. What kind of separation anxiety will I have if my wife and I are no longer able to have lunch together every day?

This year is beyond weird.

As Churchill (didn’t) say: “If you’re halfway through hell, don’t stop!”

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