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A heartfelt letter to self, shared by Tegan McGowan (@tegoliviamcgowan), as part of this month's Eat NZ Kaitaki 'My Why' Assignment. Tegan is an Associate Registered Nutritionist currently based in the Bay of Plenty, here she shares a few words about where she's at...
A love letter to BAU (Business as usual) and to her post COVID self..
As I make my chia pudding for the week (just milk and the seeds at this point), I think back to the days of working the job I moved cities for. It was the dream role, working in the food system change and community resilience space, striding toward my registration as a Nutritionist and strengthening my public health foundation - all while wearing my lanyard.
Yes, I felt like I had it all for a sweet, sweet eight months. However, since the August outbreak, I am a full time responder to COVID - 19, along with all the other champs working for public health units across the motu. For a lot of us, our real careers, our real purpose have had to be dropped. Instructed by the Ministry to ‘deprioritize all business as usual’, until we make it to ‘covid as usual’. Now my days are spent with the realities of COVID-19, how strongly it can hit communities, businesses, whānau and individuals. Everyone in the same storm, but not everyone in the same boat.
When signing my contract I remember reading the disclaimer ‘in the event of an emergency you will be required to respond as needed’. Lol, I thought. But the joke’s on me, because here I am, stirring my milk and seeds for the oncoming week of working late and nonstop - as we collectively respond to this emergency that has rocked us all.
So I wanted to write this letter to my post COVID self - to say there will come a time when you can dust off your purpose and find your way back to your why. Get back to the work that inspires you and re-engage with the mahi that people continue to do in the food space.
This includes a big shout out to the Kaitaki fam at Eat NZ, as my BAU includes you. It’s gutting to not be 100% and take up every opportunity that’s offered and connect with you all. But just know it’s not personal, it's circumstantial and oh boy I wish things were different.
But for now I go to work and do my part. Like so many of us, getting through this year one day at a time.
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