In Between Space

I’ve some news to share with you. It’s even good news. But I’ve been finding myself reluctant to do so. Once it is revealed, the in-between space is gone.

We’ve all had in between spaces. Summers when you were young were the in between spaces of learning – where you could languish in play time and know learning time was ahead. It is that time between conceiving your child, and becoming parents when (if you are lucky) you get to anticipate the joy but experience none of the hardship. It is the time between an engagement and the wedding. Even on the flip side…After a divorce as you learn to find your own voice again. That time where you got a job offer but hadn’t started yet. Maybe even during the search for a new role. Perhaps it is as simple as when you are clear of a new direction.

In between times are full. Of hope, certainly. Especially, of possibility.

Once you start on what’s next, that in-between space is forever gone. When you are doing the work, learning the school, growing the skills… you are in the flow of that activity. And, then you can see how much you have to learn. You know how hard it is to care for a child. You experience the tradeoffs and reality of building an enduring committed relationship. You realize that whatever problem you’ve “left” lives on in you… as you take it to the next situation. When you sit in the middle of a project, you will see how far extremely away that “possibility” you once imagined actually is. Sometimes a yard away – within arms reach –, but often times a furlong of space between what you imagined and what is possible or actually happening.

Moving from the in-between space to the place of action is to move from fantasy to reality. It’s the difference of looking at a beautiful far-away vista. And then climbing up to it.


So, I do want to get on with it. To share with you the big news, but also to start the work.

But I also want to press the pause button of time to savor this. T.H.I.S. There are so few in-between spaces anymore in this Social Era. It seems like we are always-on, always moving, always active. A good friend shared what he described as his hustle,  and then his “side-hustle” in case that first thing didn’t work out. He’s not the only one. Many people are swinging from vine to vine (or hoping to) and so activity is more the norm. It’s hard to find these crevices of creative solace to tuck into.  The day when I share the news with you, it’ll become more of a demand (at least, in my own mind but also the social obligation) – something that “must” be done every day and with a certain deadline and commitment to an end. Until then, there’s just the imaginings of how great it will be.

10 Replies

  1. Thank you. I so enjoyed sharing in the deliciousness of possibility. There’s another flavour of delicious that I see: the perfection of your ever expanding vision/ideas. Or maybe that is the same flavour you talk about, but for me there’s an element of the perfection while it lives and grows in our imaginations, and even in conversations. Once it’s real, its no longer perfect. Of course, it may become better once it’s in the world, and the work is unfolding, and others bring their talents and influence to shape it but it will never quite be the delicious perfection of “in between.” I thank you for sharing, for it invited me to explore what I’ve just written….

  2. Lovely, Nilofer, thank you for sharing. Your words inspire me to remember past “in-betweens” and look forward to the future “in-betweens”. The post evoked emotion and hope and memory. Wow. I’ll be thinking about this concept for a while, I think. And I’ll share so others can find this place.

  3. Thanks Nilofer. Great piece. Your thoughts reminded me to be patient with new team members just like you would with a child as they are learning. Everyone is expected to hit the ground running these days and add value to the team as well as for the customer as soon as possible but in reality it takes a while for the team member to get up to speed to be able to build the necessary customer relationships as well as learn the internal processes and tools that they will need to be successful at their job and actually provide the value we are looking for. Maybe as leaders we can keep this in mind and give people a little more in between time. I know it is hard in this 24/7 work flow and get it done yesterday sales environment but I think in the long run it will help create a much more productive team.

  4. Nilofer – you make me smile. I so love your writing. Your ability to turn a pre-announcement into an emotional state of being, the in-between, is amazing. You’ve given this varying phase of time, life and made it something we all own. You are such a gifted writer.

  5. I am going to savor in between for an extended long weekend and then go public on Monday afternoon. I hope I can hold onto the delicious flavor of unimagined possibilities for a while.

  6. I love the way you describe the in betweens. Sometimes, I long for the in betweens, because they represent a break from the now. For example, I always like to have a vacation planned that I can look forward to. That serves two in between purposes – 1) it makes my daily life an in between (between vacations) and 2) the vacation itself is an in between of my daily life. There are also those in betweens that make your stomach tie up in knots, such as the in between when you lose your job and have yet to find a new one. I very much look forward to your news, but until then, enjoy your in between!

  7. this came at such a perfect time. I am in the in-between space and have been loving the possibility and the hope. so fun. so inspiring. but soon, very soon, the in-between will become the happening and I know, as I’ve experienced just what you write, that possibility will drift into the background as reality births hustle, persistence, and, hopefully, incredible results.

  8. I can’t believe it has been 2.5 years since I read this piece, Nilofer. It just keeps coming back to me, like lyrics from your childhood that bring back deep thoughts and emotion. I shared it again today. Thank you for this post.

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