I keep wondering the same thing. I sat through an endless meeting the other day where people kept sharing how exhausted they are. We are in the same job. I feel fresh like a spring flower. What is it that’s exhausting them so badly?
They say “COVID,” but COVID means we do a lot less work. Nobody has to be at the office. Student evaluations of teachings were cancelled. All research expectations were removed. The university is paying for people to take 100% paid breaks from teaching to rest. (I’m not requesting one because if I rest any more than I already do, I’ll be a vegetable.)
Among the people at that meeting, I’m the only mother of a small child and the only person who has an intense research agenda.
So why are they so exhausted? Is it some sort of a class marker, like the ladies with their smelling salts? And is my lack of performative exhaustion betraying my peasant roots?