Permission To Be Human, Even (Especially) During a Pandemic
I took a couple months off from blogging unintentionally, but am feeling the urge to create again (thanks, quarantine) so figured we could all use some encouragement during this weird time!
I’m trying to find the delicate balance of spreading light but not ignoring (really though how could you) the intense energy of the world right now.
What is there even to say during this?
I’ve been trying to approach everyday with a mindset of presence, even though all I want to do is crawl out of this reality, run fast, and never look back. Ya with me?
But we can’t do that, as much as we want to. So the alternative is to lean in. Surrender to what’s happening, and create our new normal.
It sounds easy, but don’t let me fool you. I’m struggling daily to stay afloat, and my usual sunny outlook has felt rather cloudy. I’m an extrovert and my love language is touch, which means I’m dying slowly here. I miss hugging. I miss knowing I can adventure freely. Heck, I miss going to the grocery store without feeling overwhelmed by needing to remember to hand sanitize every other freakin minute. Not to mention the intense sadness I feel for the state of our world and the fear of the sickness itself, which makes everything we must do right now valid. But still, it’s heavy.
The best thing we can do right now is not to use this time to hustle, or put immense pressure on ourselves to do some great project (but if that happens naturally, by all means). And for the love of God definitely don’t buy into the media telling you to use this time to get your best body, whatever that even means.
I think what we need to do is use this time to come home to ourselves. Lean in to the slowdown. Get quiet for the simple sake of listening. It’s uncomfortable for a reason. Let it be.
Let it be painful and ugly and full of tears. Let it be full of unknown. So much damn unknown. And let it be human.
Allow the space to grieve. Because really, that’s what we’re all doing here. That’s why it feels so damn heavy. We’re grieving the loss of our old lives. Our comfort. Our finances. Maybe even some of us are grieving loved ones, which hurts my heart more than I can express. We are grieving the loss of our sense of control. Which, I’m sure you are discovering, we never had in the first place.
Hold space for the sadness, the anger, the pain. Move through it.
And simultaneously, hold space for optimism. Know that this too, shall pass and remember that on your darkest days. Hold space for the hope of what our world will look like when we come out of this. It won’t look the same, of that I am certain. But I have a feeling it’ll be better. Don’t you know that the best things often bloom from the shittiest circumstances?
Because both are equally important, and very much needed. It’s not healthy to get through this wearing rainbow goggles and totally ignorant to what’s happening, while you joyfully skip down grocery store isles touching everything in sight, including other humans. And it also won’t be best for you, or the people who love you dearly, if you sink into a dark hole full of sheer panic and media and headlines and dread from which you never return.
Keep your heart open.
Look for the daily beauty (those spring flowers though).
Get some fresh air.
Attempt to focus on the constants as the world around you shifts- your dog that now has you home to love on 24/7 (a real dream in their eyes). The sun that still rises with every new morning, no matter how challenging the last 24 hours felt. That music that stirs your heart and makes you dance for the sheer joy of moving your body.
And maybe when we’re on the other side, we’ll have a new found respect for the things we hold so dearly. For real, human touch that goes beyond pixels (but in the meantime, God bless the Zoom). For Mother Nature and our ability to wander aimlessly in search of soaking up her freedom. For plans that we are able to cancel, on our own watch, thank you very much. For stocked shelves at the grocery store. For good health. And most importantly a respect for the unwavering comfort that at the end of the day, if all we have is each other, then we have enough.