Familiarity in the Everyday





We have settled into a semblance of rituals. A familiarity, at the very least. It is not our new normal, for there is nothing normal about the circumstances that preceded the change. Yet, there is comfort in our days. Stability.

When I’ve silenced my alarm more than enough times, I wake and start the morning with a splash of water on my face. Morning coffee is mine to make; he is already working in the other room. With a hot cup in my hands, I nestle into my bed, pulling the covers over my legs, and thus begins my workday.

Our afternoon coffee is prepared by him. Freshly ground espresso percolates on the stove, the sweet aroma pungent. I eagerly wait for him to appear in my room, steaming coffee in hand; now I am ready to begin writing.

This is the time of day when the sun pours through my bedroom window, bright and brilliant. This is when my mind is at its most alert, most creative. This is the time when words are most aptly formed.

I’m grateful to isolation for this part of my routine. Without the hustle and bustle of commuting or appointments, there is so much more space for being—space held for creativity, thoughts, quiet.

Next week the children’s at-home learning begins, and we will have to adapt and adjust our familiar rituals to make space for that. I’m hesitant, fearful of the anxiety that could arise from the change, the shift from no obligations to structure and assignments needing to be completed.

Which means this weekend is meant for savouring; slow days, following our heart’s desires, minimal rules. The days have been filled with reading, writing, lazing, bicycling, soaking in the sunshine, coffee, delicious beverages, and more.

It is the calm before the potential storm.

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All photos belong to and are copyright of Vanessa Voth unless stated otherwise.

Photo of Vanessa and her family was taken by Rebecca Sehn.

Langley, British Columbia

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