Last year was an anxiety-ridden mess. At times it felt like the entire world was paralyzed. At other times, it felt like everything was moving at warp speed. Life as we knew it seemed a distant memory. Now everyone is racing to get back into whatever passes for normal. Time to get back to the hustle and bustle of daily life. 

Yet, I find myself stuck. I want to get back to hugging friends and family. Maybe even going back to working in person…with everyone…maybe. But, I also want to stay home with my family, go for the leisurely morning walks that became part of my new life, and be able to go out without the hordes crushing in on me. More than that, I want to stay in my bubble. 

As women, I think we carry a lot of expectations and responsibility for others. I always carry a lot of expectations on my shoulders. And while I would be hard-pressed to say I am thankful for the pandemic, I can say that it brought a break that was sorely needed. It allowed me time to get away from the busyness and expectations of others. I am, honestly, tempted to keep hiding in that world where societal expectations don’t exist. Then this quote comes to mind…

What a great reminder that my circumstances may change, but I don’t have to feel compelled to move at the pace of others’ expectations. I don’t have to race back into wearing clothes that require buttons. I don’t have to do or be anything that I don’t want to be. My first responsibility is to be the best version of myself that I can be, for myself.

-Mercedes Pino
Girl Museum Inc.

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