I've been finding it really hard to read the news/my newsfeed lately--the overwhelmed, brokenhearted part of me just wants to bury my head in the Cape Cod sand, ignore it all, and cuddle my little one--and the enraged, productive part of me wants to stay informed, involved, and active (especially because each piece of news that I read is more unbelievable than the next). I feel a strong urge to get out there and DO something, but I can't find the time or energy to do much more than the very basics right now.
My personal life has been in a state of upheaval since we had Charlie Mae (obviously). I'm trying to adjust to working with an almost 3-month old at home, trying to figure out how to navigate balancing the pull of motherhood with the pull of all of my other responsibilities, and somewhere in there, I'm trying to find time to take care of myself.
Needless to say, I feel pretty all over the place. I can hardly find the time to shower, let alone get out there and become an activist. I'm struggling with this--with my desire to do something and my inability to do hardly anything but the very bare minimum on any given day.
And then, here come the holidays! They're here and it's time for family, tradition, gratitude, making pies...and I love all of that, but it adds to the already overflowing pot. So, what to do?
As cheesy and overused as it is/sounds, and as much as it isn't activism or productivity in the way that I'd like to be productive in both my work and in the world right now, I'm trying my hardest to just focus in on the theme of the season: gratitude. If nothing else, feeling a real, full sense of gratitude is a helpful way to quell some of the anxiety about all of this chaos and get dialed-in on the present moment.
I won't bore you with a list of everything that I'm grateful for here [been there, done that], but suffice it to say that our darling daughter, whose very existence is all it takes to make me feel so full of love I could burst, tops the list this year. If nothing else, I want to tune into my gratitude in order to stay present for her, so that I can do everything I can to raise her to feel safe, empowered, strong, and kind, despite the chaos that surrounds her.
So right now, that's what I'm trying to focus on. I'm taking things day-by-day (or hour-by hour) and doing the best that I can in each given moment. I am so grateful for this life, even when it's chaotic, and that's what I want to remember this Thanksgiving (and really, every other day, too).
I hope that even if you're feeling equally overwhelmed by the state of our world, you can do the same. And I don't mean ignore what's happening or block it out, I mean connect with a deep sense of gratitude despite what's happening, because that's important, too.
We have all been blessed with so many gifts; my wish for each of us is that we can truly feel the weight of these gifts during this holiday season, even if we don't feel as stable as we have in holidays past.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I hope your day is full of what matters most.
[Quick programming note: my brother and his GF are coming to visit for Thanksgiving + to meet Charlie Mae--hoorraayyyy!--so there will be no SJOTW on Friday. I want to soak up every minute with them while they're in town. I'll be back on Monday.]