Like Billy Pilgrim, I’ve come unstuck in time, it feels like.
We joke that, since the pandemic started — fuck, since Donald Trump became President years before that — time has become increasingly difficult to gauge: did something happen this week, or the week before? Was it actually months ago? It’s been the regular go-to with friends for some time (but how much time, ha ha etc.), but ever since arriving back from the UK, it’s been particularly true for me. Somehow, I’ve stumbled and lost my footing on the calendar. It’s a disorienting feeling.
It’s not merely that one week will feel like two, by the time the weekend arrives, although that’s been the case for the past couple of weeks at least. (We can blame overwork for that, at least, I think, as much as I should feel worse about that.) It’s the feeling of uncertainty when waking up and genuinely feeling unclear about what day it is: is it a weekend, or a weekday? Am I meant to be working, and if I am, is it one of those days when there are meetings or interviews, or am I just writing? How anxious about the day ahead should I be?
Beyond that, even, since we reached May, I’ve been convinced that it’s been later in the month than the reality. I’d have deadlines looming that were more than a week away, while other things I’d feel were missed opportunities rather than open doors for me to walk through.
Is this all coming from the travel, or something else? I can’t tell, but it doesn’t really matter where it comes from. What matters is the feeling of tumbling forward, a little unsteady and unclear about just when I am, the entire… well, the entire time.