Are we there yet?

As people venture out to do more things, as vaccines and booster shots rollout and showing your vaccine passport becomes the norm, the past few weeks have felt oddly ‘normal’ in some ways and super bizarre at the same time. I know we’re not there yet, but I can’t help but feel like we’re coming through the other side of the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s wonderful to think about and scary all at once.

Last weekend I went on an overnight trip to Montreal to watch a Habs game – they lost but the event was still super fun! Yesterday I attended my first live concert in almost 2 years. As a singer and someone who has seen how hard the arts industry and my artistic friends have been hit by the pandemic, I cried throughout the show. A lot. My love of musical theatre combined with people of all ages coming together in song, and hearing one of my best friends sing gloriously from my favourite musical and then watching her command an audience with her talented speaking skills gave me all the feels. Even though both of these events were attended with masks on the whole time, I didn’t care about that – the human connection was powerful and helped me find parts of myself which have been dormant for almost 2 years now.

The Bell Centre – minus ~23k people

I’ve also been singing again recently with Seventeen Voyces, which has also been SO wonderful. I’ll be honest, I was terrified to go back to rehearsal after not singing much during the pandemic. I wondered if any sound would come out, if I was still a soprano and if I would be good enough to be there. Thankfully the first rehearsal went ok, and I’ve been managing. It’s really tough to sing with a mask on and I’ve made some interesting sounds at times, but overall I am so happy to be making music again. We record in a couple of weeks and will also be singing a Christmas concert, so I am really looking forward to both of those events!

Work has been very busy. 🙃 Staying on top of multiple email inboxes, going back into the office, meeting the demands of the position and being an empathetic and understanding leader is my jam (at least I feel it is one of my strengths) but some days have been really challenging. One thing I realized during the past year is that my energy is not infinite. When I give 110% at work, I rarely have energy for anything else and spend my weekend recharging for the week ahead. Maybe I’m getting old, maybe I overtaxed myself before or maybe it’s pandemic fatigue but most days I just don’t have any energy left at the end of the day to do anything other than playing with the cats and chilling on the couch. Forget social media after being on a screen and in meetings all day. The pandemic has been tough in that I haven’t have the same musical/artistic outlets that I once did to help me process my emotions, and I’m not playing sports. While my inner introvert has been ecstatic with no commitments, the extroverted and emotional/social side of me misses people. I miss my friends, and I miss my family. I wish many days that I was closer to the maritimes. It’s been a rollercoaster ride for sure, and I know that everyone has experienced the pandemic in their own way.

I’m still working on balance and setting boundaries for myself to stay healthy. One day at a time! I talk to a lot of my mentees about this – it can be tough to stick to a plan and put yourself first when the external demands keep coming. My kitty has been going through some health things, and a few other unexpected personal stressors have dropped in my lap over the past few weeks. I’ve always tried to be as resilient and positive as possible in the face of challenges, but lately I recognize that I’m withdrawing and am a little more honest when people ask how I am. I am hopeful that the additional stressors will soon pass, and I’ll resume my normal cheery demeanour soon enough. Having just come through a 4-day break I am feeling much more like myself. Win! 🙂 In the mean time, I want to shout out some love to all of those who have been supportive, flexible and understanding. You all are gems – thank you for being fantastic! ❤️

How was the pandemic affected you? Are you thriving? Taking things one day at a time? Do you feel that we’re there yet? I’d love to hear from you.

Stay well and sending love your way – thanks for reading! 🙏❤️

About Melanie Anderson

Singer, basketball player, scotch enthusiast, Canadian.
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1 Response to Are we there yet?

  1. Kerrie Whitehurst says:

    As always, Mel, your musings and thoughts are beautifully authentic. Thank you. Yup, as an extrovert I’m feeling much the same as you, in all things. But, as you so wisely say, time is the great healer. I’m sensing an optimism and renewed energy in the air and I’m going with that! Stay well, my friend.


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