This morning, I stayed in my bed until 12 p.m., and all it did was make me feel horrible. As I’m sitting here writing on my laptop, I’m staring at our little tomato plant. It already has our second tomato, which means that it hasn’t taken a day off. It has been continuously working to produce an orb containing warm, sweet juice. All I have been doing is embodying the couch in a human form.
The weather is already hot and humid, but instead of acclimating, I’ve been lurking in rooms with air conditioning. Perhaps, the only time I’ve been outside, except for right now, has been my daily walk to work and my daily walk home. I’ve been living inside walls, not giving the sun and fresh air the time of day. I think I’m too afraid of mosquito bites and sweat (which I shouldn’t be afraid of because they probably won’t kill me…unless I just jinxed myself).
While I have been loving my extended dates with Dr. Who (it’s this amazing TV show that everyone should watch and you have no excuse because it’s on Amazon Prime), I feel as though I’ve been missing something. When I was little, my mom would make me play outside in the evenings. Sometimes we would ride our bikes around the block, sometimes just in the driveway. Sometimes we would take the trip to the park. I even remember rollerblading in the driveway pretending that I was ice skating.
In the summer, we spent even more time outside. We would spend the days picking blueberries, skating at Audubon Park and gardening. But when we moved to Texas, it all came to a screeching halt. We didn’t make anymore blueberry popcicles because we didn’t pick blueberries anymore, and there was no need for a cool treat if we were spending our time inside. The closest thing to spending time outside was swimming and going to the park by our house. But it wasn’t required anymore, so I never really thought anything of it…until now.
I don’t want to waste this summer watching TV on the couch. I have that partially covered since I’m going to be an orientation adviser, meaning I’ll be working on campus all day long. However, for the days where nothing is expected of me, I want to expect something of myself. I want to enjoy the sunshine and feel the breeze on my skin. I want to see something green, and I want to ride my bike. I want to swim and have picnics and swing at the park. (If you don’t know me, I love swinging so much and I will honestly stay there forever. The little kids can wait for someone else to get off.)
I know that I can’t go back to what I used to know, but that doesn’t have to stop me from enjoying the same things, even if it means finding new ways to enjoy them. I must simply be vigilant and fight the little voice in the back of my head saying “Don’t go outside, Sabrina! Stay inside forever!” (This is the same voice that tells me not to work out and to eat whatever I want.)
I have to put on deodorant, buy bug spray and open the door. It sounds so easy while I’m swinging on this hammock, but I need to stick to this mantra even when I’m curled up in my bed. My mom isn’t here anymore to tell me to go outside. I have to do that for myself, and I will. And it will be so worth it.