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Bringing you up to speed: I got married early September. A month later, I released my debut novel. Big events made quiet and modest by Covid-19 but cherished milestones nonetheless. Perhaps it had been for the best, the universe way of granting my true desires. A celebration of our love and commitment without all-night partying and long list of invitees, a Zoom launch that perhaps this lifelong introvert was more comfortable with to mark her book-length publishing debut. I’d love to do in-person book events at some point and catch up with loved ones who were not able to make our wedding. But though restrictions are loosening (where I live anyway) this pandemic isn’t over.
I am now a wife and a novelist, identities heavy with perceived meanings and roles. The wedding will be a sweet memory, The Cine Star Salon a proud accomplishment. I am so, so thankful for these and to the people who have helped made them possible. But as a person, I have not really changed that much. My husband and I have been life partners for years, still touching base about bills to pay and weekend plans. My writing sessions still yield awful drafts with measly word counts. Our identities are just choices we made and continue to make until we change our minds.
You know what’s the big change? I am a commuter again. I stopped working from home this week. Most mornings have been rainy and the rush hour traffic has returned to pre-pandemic levels, but I was very happy to return to the office. I planned my day-to-day outfits and meal-prepped lunches. I was serene as I waited at the bus stop in the rain and read a book onboard. I even put an 8X10″ framed wedding photo on my desk. Cheesy. I guess I’m missing the normalcy.
My sleep suffers though because I have to wake up earlier. Thankfully, we turn back our clocks tonight. Will seize the opportunity to catch up on some shuteye.
Featured photo © 2022 Leah Ranada