This weekend I had “a bit of a wobble.” Someone said that on Instagram the other day, and I thought it perfectly described my feelings this weekend. I was having a bit of an isolation wobble. Dwindling motivation, growing anxiety, and a sense of longing for… something. To be honest, I didn’t have just one wobble, but a couple of pretty wobbly days. And you know, when I am lucky enough to be safe and well, and my family are all safe and well, and have enough to eat, it’s quite difficult to justify getting the wobbles. Which makes me feel guilty for feeling sad, which of course then makes me want to give myself a good shake. Sheesh. Seems the wobbles cover a wide range of emotions.

Our farm in Douglas New Brunswick, 2007.
Photo courtesy of Krista Burpee-Buell

I love that shot above. It was taken on the farm back home by my niece Krista in 2007. A lifetime ago, but we just didn’t know it at the time. My stepfather was still alive, he and my mum still lived in the old farmhouse, my sister and her husband and kids still lived next door to Mum and Lloyd. The world seems to have been a kinder and greener place then. Although I know that’s just me looking at the past through my rose-coloured glasses. But I think that’s what I was yearning for on the weekend. Some semblance of the past, when my family were all together.

I think that maybe, if I could, I’d go back even further, to the time before my brother’s operation, when he could still walk, and his life was good. When Hubby and I were home in the summer, we’d have family dinners to celebrate Mum’s birthday. The table always groaned with the weight of all the pot luck dishes. Sisters and brothers and brothers-in-law, nieces and nephews, and their boyfriends and spouses, and even a small great-grandchild or two in the last few years milled about, carried bowls and platters of food inside. Then filled their plates and headed back outside for stories, and laughter, and smart-arse comments. Then there was cake and tea, and lots and lots of dishes to do.

We don’t do those extended family get-togethers anymore. We’re too spread apart geographically now. And my sisters’ and brother’s families are grown up and have families of their own. One niece is going to be a grandmother soon. I guess that will make me a great-great-aunt. Time doesn’t stand still. Even though sometimes I wish it would.

That’s why I was a bit wobbly on the weekend. Our days are quiet. We’re not going anywhere. Time seems to be standing still in our isolation bubble. And that affords me way too much time to indulge my penchant for dreaming of the past. And that’s why I’ve written this post. Analyzing my wobble, so to speak. Because I think it can sometimes help to examine how we’re feeling and try to put our finger on exactly what we ARE feeling. Name that emotion.

So. I was feeling a bit lonely. And as a result missing those days back on the farm. And, for most of the weekend, good books, cups of tea, or even toasted hot cross buns slathered in butter could not rouse me from my wallowing. Thoughts of blog posts, new outfit combinations, books to research, new and interesting dishes Hubby and I might make, bike rides to plan, or garden projects that Hubby has dreamed up for us to do together did not interest me. For a couple of days, anyway.

Then this morning I awoke to sunshine. And the wobble had passed. Hubby and I had our tea in the sun room. And then he headed outside and I spent an hour on the phone to my old friend Debbie who lives back in New Brunswick. We chortled, and reminisced, and moaned about our hair. Oh, it was a most reviving phone call.

Then I sat down at the computer to write a blog post. Not this one. But this is what came out when I started typing. All about my weekend wobble.

Here’s what else I did this morning. Found all kinds of photos of Hubby and me, on various wonderful trips. To South America, and the Balkans, and even canoeing in Algonquin Park. These pictures made me smile.

You know, since I’ve been writing this, I’ve been thinking of a children’s toy that was popular in the seventies. Weebles were funny little round dolls shaped like pears, and weighted on the bottom so that when they wobbled and fell over, they always bounced back up. I still remember the advertising jingle on television: “Weebles wobble, but they don’t fall down.”

So I guess my lesson is that we will have a wobble or two, feel the occasional bout of isolation anxiety, during these difficult days. But we don’t need to beat ourselves up. We’re like Weebles. We will definitely wobble, but we won’t fall down.

Or not for long, anyway. 🙂


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52 thoughts on “Wobbly Weekend”

      1. Leslie in Oregon

        Me too. And with a great deal of overdue work to do, I very much need to be productive. “Wobbling” is a very good word description for my state of mind and emotion. Yours in wobbling, Leslie😘

  1. Plenty of wobbles here too . You’d have to be an odd person not to be seriously affected by what is going on just now . Problems of the past pale by comparison . What a wonderful , calming photograph . Rather like an impressionist painting . I thought it was England at first but that’s not an English type fence . It made me want to walk down the track & see what was around the bend . Which is much better than being afraid of what is to come . Just what we need at the moment – optimism .

    1. That photo is like a painting isn’t it? The best thing for me is that I know what lies down that road and can wander there in my mind.

    2. Leslie in Oregon

      Very well put, Wendy. I had the same reaction to that beautiful photograph, which I’d like to enlarge, print, frame and put on a wall I look at frequently. Thank you so much for posting it, Sue.

  2. I didn’t struggle as much with the first few weeks of the new world order as I am now. I think the novelty has well and truly worn off. However, as it’ll be a while before things return to what they were like before the pandemic, I’m going to have to get a grip. And I’m searching for a reliable way to do that. Reading, yoga and meditation all help but I miss the freedom to go places and see people. I know there is nothing for it but to adapt. And I know how lucky I am to be well, have a comfortable life and live with my husband and daughter. But still, it’s hard not to chafe against this new way of living. Love your niece’s photo and the flashbacks from your trips. Stay well and take care.

  3. Similar here but not so much a wobble, more a feeling that someone has just tugged the rug under my feet, swiftly, and I have to hold onto something. And then back to business. Today – fine! Sun shining! Been for an invigorating run! Saw a snoozing lamb! Said hello to a lone stone-waller, busy at his trade! Considering we are experiencing something totally unknown, I think we are all doing rather well.

    1. Annie Green, that’s exactly how I’m feeling! Like someone pulled the rug out from under me and I need something to hold on to! I haven’t found what that something is and so I drift through my days and nights without focus. I don’t like the feeling at all.

  4. Yes,”…I let my guard down and you pulled the rug…..”
    Ups and downs,ups and downs…..I let it be,good to recognize the feelings,live it and not to fight against it
    Today is a sunny,crisp day,I’ve got flowers delivery for my balconies,they are so lovely…I’ve decided to support as much little bussinesses,fruits,vegetables,bakeries…as I can.
    This photo is so beautiful!

  5. Weebles it is–hopefully we won’t hit our head or break anything on the bounce.
    Your comment reminded me of a recent blog post from someone in the UK who–over the course of the past month–remarked that they had exhibited all the attributes of the Seven Dwarfs (except for sneezy–they were thankful to say). Happy. Grumpy. Sleepy. etc. Wobbles are to be expected, regardless of our circumstances. Good to acknowledge them.

  6. I’m wobbling right along with you. The sun makes such a difference! We had a warm, sunny weekend and I was able to work in the garden a bit. Then this morning, it’s snowing on my daffodils. Blech. I think I will bake something. And avoid the mirror – I SO need a haircut and have my fingers crossed that my salon will be able to open again before my next appointment. My hair is short like yours and I will be 12 weeks between cuts by then. Yikes.

    My daughter is about to have a baby in England, and I won’t be able to be there – the airline cancelled my flight, of course. It’s heartbreaking, really, but I am SO, SO grateful for FaceTime. And even if I could get there, I’d have to quarantine for 14 days. It’s just unmanageable. So I focus on my gratitude that she is doing well, her partner is very supportive, and the healthcare she is getting in a great women’s and infants’ hospital seems top notch. At this point (to quote one of my favorite movies) that’s As Good As It Gets.

  7. Yep! Apparently the Weebles are almost as contagious as the virus. At least, there’s a lot of it going ’round. Glad you’ve bounced back to upright for now. No shame at all if there’s more Weebling to come, for which it will be useful to have analyzed and have all your antidotes ready. And you know you have Weeble company at the other side of the country 😉 xo

  8. Thank you. This post and comments really resonates with me. Wish for all, to keep well and be safe.

  9. I had an episode myself whilst grocery shopping on Saturday. Irritation at a stockboy for no eggs, no flour, no yeast, ….and when the cashier offered me a packet of little chocolate eggs as a treat, the tears came. I was undone and just cried, all the while puzzling at my unusual reaction. Stress, displaced anxiety, loneliness, too much change from normal, hideous April weather, the wobbles…yeah, I know exactly what you mean. Facetime with daughter and grandchildren rescued me and righted the rest of the weekend. Connection always helps.

  10. I love your photo – a real Memory Lane. By now we’re all realizing how lucky we are to have lived our lives without fear, and in times of peace and modern medicine. We read books about times where people did live in fear, but somehow found resources within themselves to cope with wars, dictators, or pestilence, or.. .
    I’ve wobbled a bit lately too, but give myself a shake and tell myself to get on with something to feel accomplished about when this is over. I fear coming out of this crisis with nothing to show for it. But bring on more sunshine, please.

  11. I love your niece’s photo… made me want to wander into it and see where it led.
    Really enjoyed your post today.
    I hadn’t thought about Weebles in a long time, but they’ve always been completely relatable!

  12. Wobbles are going around the world with each of us is contending with our own version. We are reinventing what a new normal is and sometimes it is very difficult to come to grips with the changes…bouncing up after a time of feeling down is the key and we are all trying to find ways to keep the ‘feeling up’ days in the majority. Luckily my family is not stressing about health issues or money issues (retirement with pensions does have its benefits) but being away from other family members and friends is hard…telephone calls and video chats only go so far. I find keeping busy is the answer so exercise, hobbies, baking (hence the needed exercise!) and spending quality time with my husband and pets is key. Winnipeg seems far from having Spring with stretches of below normal temperatures but getting outside to garden will be lovely. We might be in this for the long haul so we need to keep chins up and enjoy the blessings we do have at the moment. Keep safe everyone!

  13. Coincidentally, I also had “not feeling myself” day on Monday. I just stayed in my pajamas, lounging around all day.
    A “wobble day” is a great way of putting it.
    Like yourself, I am super lucky at this time and anytime really (birth lottery again).
    Thankfully my wobble only lasted one day.
    Thanks so much for posting
    Suz from Vancouver

  14. Thank you for this post. I think we all feel a bit wobbly at times.
    What a beautiful photo! It brings to mind “Anne of Green Gables”. I can see Matthew silently driving the buggy while Anne chatters away next to him.

  15. You put a finger on what so many are feeling, as well as the guilt of it, when so many are in real trouble. I am so lucky to be paid to work from home. I have little to do, but have to be close to my computer and ready for a video meeting at a moment’s notice, so it’s hard to get stuck into a project like cleaning (and lord knows we need it since the cleaner’s stopped coming!) or curl up with a good book. I’m desperate for a trip to the chiropractor, hair dresser and nail salon, to say nothing of a night out with the girls, a big family picnic, a movie at the cinema or a show. And people are on ventilators and businesses ruined – again, the guilt! Thanks for putting it out there. I’m still enjoying your virtual tea party from last week!

  16. What really makes me wobble is the lack of touch. Luckily I have hubby, but not being able to hug, to kiss or to snuggle my kids and grandkids some days just knocks me off balance. Thank goodness the sun has finally arrived and hands in the dirt gardening saves the day.

  17. This flippin weather!! Now that’s not a nice start! :/
    At the best of times, April never ends. I yearn for colourful hanging baskets and being in my garden.
    Now throw in the virus and isolation …. one can wobble.
    So I escape and watch Netflix, Prime or Britbox. I really enjoy YouTube audio stories too.
    When I’m down, I have to allow the sadness to flow through me. Accept it and recognize why I feel this way. Then it floats away…eventually. 😉

    Beautiful photo Krista!

  18. Thanks for the post Sue. Definitely resonated with me. I’m wobbling for sure. Stay safe. Be well.

  19. I loved the Weebles and my mom still has them for the great grandkids. Yes, the 9.5 inches of snow on Easter Sunday was not fun and our record breaking cold this week makes me feel like it is February and that is a harsh thought! Our winters are long enough without having to repeat months! I am grateful for so much and overall it is good. My parents are older and that scares me as South Dakota is not taking this as seriously as I would like. They are staying home and that makes me feel better. My nephew and his wife had a baby boy last week and we all miss being able to snuggle him. It’s tough times for so many. I started my garden seeds and that is bringing me joy! Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  20. Excellent post. I have had the wobbles off and on all week. And I feel frustrated with people who are not following what we are being asked to do which is to stay home – how hard is that?
    Just reading your post helps as I know that I am not alone in this world with wobbly feelings.

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