Do you ever feel off? Akilter. Not like vertigo. Or ill-fitted shoes. Or a sunburn. Or that vague prodrome before a cold. I mean that feeling of not fitting in your skin or like your persona is askew. You just don’t feel right, or think right. It’s not that your wrong or in error but you are just slightly out of bounds. The timing is off. The reactions are a nanosecond too slow. The emotional responses are blunted – or muted completely. And your brain is working with a fair percentage of the neurons tied behind your back.

Is it remnants of the pandemic? The shutdown – in all its various permutations? The isolation? The contraction or general existence?  The overall reductions in basically everything? Stay distanced. Mask and cloak. Beyond the standard N-95, have we simply stayed in our masks? Even with ourselves?

Looking in the mirror, I see someone, a person, objectively I know it’s me but there is a sense of a molecular disparity. She is not me. I am not her. I think and feel and move in a subatomic plane that runs parallel but is separate. At least that is what it feels like. Or as close as I can get to how it feels.

To not be the inhabitant of myself, my space, my experience.

How do I restore things, find the proper fit, regain my footing? Magic? Wishes and fairies? Prayer?

Before I lost weight, I felt too big, bulging and bloated, colored beyond my margins. Now, I feel shrunk, just ever so slightly reduced. Will it settle. Will I equilibrate? Like dough rising slowing in a pan? It just needs time and the right conditions.