I've spent the last three months mostly offline. Oh, I've been online a little bit every day, but by and large my hours online have been minimal. My computer has barely been touched as my online moments have been spent mostly on my phone. The online sites I normally read sat unread. I had no schedule.
This is the least amount of time I've spent online in over a decade. It's been the first time in a decade that I've gone through the holidays without thinking about an editorial calendar. It's been the first time in a decade that when news broke I could just gather the basic facts and then shut down.
I didn't have to wade into the internet reading post after post, comment after comment. I don't have news alerts set up. When things happened, and oh boy did they happen in the last quarter of 2016, I could just turn away. I could shut down.
It's been kind of weird.
It's also been a whole lot of wonderful.
I'd love to tell you that in those months I completed all kinds of personal projects. That my house was cleaner than it's ever been. That I made strides in French or perfected a malai kofta recipe.
In October, I walked. A lot. I average a five kilometre walk five days a week, which is something I never managed to do when I was working. I even flirted with, though ultimately rejected, taking up running again. Aside from a quick girls' weekend to Montreal to see Adele, I stuck close to home.
In November, I shut off the news and binge read historical romance novels. Regency England seemed pretty far away from the current climate and I wanted to be anywhere but the current news climate. This binge bled into December but I think it's hit its breaking point as I find myself reaching for non-fiction again.
December was a mish-mash. I read. I went to Toronto and spent a morning at the Art Gallery of Ontario staring at Monet's Water Lilies (Nymphéas), Eugène Jansson's Hornsgatan at Night, and Van Gogh's Starry Night over the Rhône. The next day I pet a stingray at Ripley's Aquarium and watched the sharks get fed. At home, I put up the Christmas tree and made Chex Mix but didn't bake a single Christmas cookie.
Now that Christmas is over and a new year is looming, I'm getting twitchy. I'm possibly even getting a little bit bored. I need projects. I need a purpose. The time is right to hit the ground hard and find a new job. Maybe it will be a contract. Maybe it will be full-time. Maybe part-time. I don't know.
But I know I needed these few months to reset. They were a gift and I'm lucky to have been able to take this time.
So here's to 2017. May it bring new adventures. I'm rested and ready for them.