Drifting

beach clouds dawn driftwood
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I am on the phone with my Amma as she prepares to leave to India for the winter. My cell phone rings flashing the number of an old friend. I hang up and reach for my cell phone. This woman and I go back a decade, working alongside on a banking software product. We exchange pleasantries and she talks about changing careers. We plan to meet and I hang up.

The funk that has been descending on me since the end of the year suddenly seems overwhelming. I feel unmoored, untethered, uninspired. I am floating along like driftwood, filling my days with things that need immediate attention. I have a to-do list that is static taunting me each time I sit in my study. All day long I am devoted to Laddu, trailing her as she plays with her doll, demands snacks or cozies up to snuggle with me.

The demands of domesticity are untiring. Food on the table, clean clothes folded and put away, old clothes purged, new ones bought, homework attended to, screen time monitored, groceries replenished. The list seems endless. I am drowning in this samsara sagaram.

Most evenings after tucking the kids in, fussing over sick ones, fetching water and reminding them to sleep well, I make my way to my oasis. The rough draft of my memoir should call to me but it is curiously silent. I read instead, devouring a book a day. The titles are forgettable, the stories an escape into rich, glorious lives.

There are moments I think I should pin down in words, but the impulse fades as quickly as it materializes. Perhaps it is that my children are growing, perhaps it is that the blog has served its purpose. I feel like I am at crossroads with a thousand avenues I could amble along. I am stuck instead, waiting for the lights to change, for the traffic to slow, for permission to walk.

The conversation with my friend makes me think. What do I want to do this year? The word that floats to the surface is drift.

I think this year will be one where I will coast along without a goal, a destination in mind. By design or otherwise, I will submit to the forces of domesticity, ready, willing to be swept by the tide. I will live day to day, consumed by the current fire raging around me. I will wait until my manuscript calls to me. I will wait for the universe to conspire, to tell me where I am going.

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