15 years later, I finally decided to recreate my dad’s old office that sits right next to my bedroom. Who knew an engineer could have so many old school monitors paired with handwritten scribbles on a yellow notepad labeled 10/06/97. We had a pure fax machine and a laminator we didn’t even know existed. I spent hours reading through chicken scratch just to get in touch with who my dad was when he sat in this exact room 15 years ago, for a decade.

The file cabinet had papers that documented everything from college notes to house renovation notes for our California home. This little home office project got me thinking about what the first people on earth were doing to my dad back in time. What did he spend his days doing looking out this window, creating models of his mail machine, what else went through his mind other than the typical engineer problems? I’ve been in this office since quarantine and I already have cabin fever.

While some can play a facade on how lonely they are, some self-isolate because it’s either less draining than being a sleeping beauty or it’s the solution.

SLEEPING BEAUTY (Noun, Singular)

Sleeping beauty is one who distracts oneself with anything or anyone to remain content but refusing to be fully awake to realize how unhappy they really are. Some people never wake up and they spend their whole lives in this deep sleep, think of it as a REM cycle, each time you don’t wake up, the next stage lasts longer and gets more intense. You start losing touch with reality, with who you are and start believing that this dream world is it, this subconscious. But in reality, it’s an escape. It’s an escape from something you’re too scared to face when you’re awake. Once awake, everything becomes so clear, you end up realizing what was a dream and what’s real but we all know, waking up is the hardest part.

*Cue wake up by Hilary Duff*

Waking up means you’re going to be vulnerable to feelings you were trying to avoid in the first place. I guess to me, waking up and facing reality is derived from self-isolation. You’re forced to figure out what you want, what makes you happy, what you don’t care for, what inspires you, to what annoys you. If I didn’t find happiness in loneliness, I would remain a sleeping beauty. And what do you know, something like vamping up my home office woke up sleeping beauty, not prince charming. GiRl PoWeR