Day 170 - A Brave New World?
Updated: Mar 24, 2020
There are so many things happening to us all right now. Besides not being able to buy toilet paper ANYWHERE! Seriously people the virus does NOT have a stomach component that I have heard of...relax on the TP hoarding. It just makes everyone feel the lack. Lack of control, lack of resources, lack of power. Maybe if we can allow the stores to restock the paper supplies, maybe we can all ratchet it down a notch. I am beginning to think that all those early contestants on Survivor lied. They all brought toilet paper as their one item. We all know you did now!
We can all agree that our world’s and their landscapes have drastically changed in the past two weeks. We are being asked to give up freedoms, social in person engagement and stay home. We are being asked to literally go within. I know first hand that no personal growth comes with addition, only with subtraction. I learn almost nothing by the things added in my life, I learn by losing things. I learn by things being taken away from me. Always have and likely always will.
However, right now I am at some sort of weird balance point. I see the subtraction but I see what is being added in in the void...
Going to work at an office
Social gatherings in person
Ability to travel
Shopping for stuff that I really don’t need
My need for image support items
New venues for connection
More time in my home
More time with my daughter
More time to be outside
More time to do things that I never had time for before
Working from home
Finding new ways to connect with people in a virtual environment
I was delivering food to my parents Saturday and I had this moment where I felt Iike I had complete clarity...I was taking care of my older parents. We as a society were focusing on the care of our elderly. I am not sure why it hit me as I carried items into their garage but it did. I felt this rightness. I felt this reordering that felt like it was in line with universal will. I felt like my actions were true and right. It was a weird moment. I felt like a curtain had been pulled back and what was revealed was TRUTH. Not my truth, not your truth...just TRUTH.
It is not as if my life before was void of taking care of my parents. I did to the degree they needed me but I didn’t really serve them. I was there for them when they needed me for something but I wasn’t really caring for them. I wasn’t a pillar for their daily lives. Something about the shift felt so right.
That got me thinking about the brave new world we are living in today. All the things that are falling away and all the things that are being added back in...for me, seems like we are getting the better end of this deal.
My life is drastically different than it was at the beginning of the month...
I am now at home all the time. I find myself grateful for the place that I live. The care that I have taken and the expense I have paid to make this place my own and to have it look the way it does. I find myself wandering around the grounds almost in awe of where I get to live. I love this place. The buildings, the decor, the comfort, the smallness, the fruit trees, the garden. I just love my home. I love my place. I love the container for my life. I am grateful for the beauty that surrounds me.
In February I listed this place for sale. I was willing to walk away in search of something else. I was willing to throw away all the work I have done for the past 3.5 years. I was willing to sell it to someone else. I spent little time here, I was at work for 11/12 hours a day including commute time. I was running around every weekend engaging in my social life. Buying crap that I didn’t really need. I was always on Zillow looking for some place better.
I am spending a lot of time with my daughter. She and I are literally living our lives in basically three rooms of our house. I hear her conversations with friends, I see what she is doing and I snuggle with her on the couch. We spend time engaging with our animals. We talk. We make food together. We go on long walks. She is my only in person contact (for the most part). I am so grateful to live in this space with her. To have her as my person.
Before, I was so busy working and running around that I missed a lot of her. I didn’t really see her. I thought that I did but I didn’t. I didn’t see that she was changing from girl to young woman. I mean I did, but now I see her differently. She is amazing to me. I am in awe of her and all that she is. I am so grateful to be living so close to such an amazing person.
I am talking to my son more. This is not really different, he calls me all the time but I find myself much more able to really listen to him. To FaceTime more and to really watch him and listen to what he says. To drop the judgment or disagreement and just be present. Offering only that which I have to give, my attention and my time. I see the magnificent human that he is and all the ways he struggles to find himself in this world. How much his need to have certainty drives his life. Again, not a new revelation to me, but I am seeing it differently.
I am doing this from home. I am getting to see into my friends and co-workers personal lives. I get to see their surroundings. I get to see their pets. I am being given access to their personal lives in a way that I wasn’t privy to before. I am reaching out in a more targeted manner. I am seeing just how many options I have now with all the online meetings, mediation, yoga classes, social opportunities. I am realizing that just like before I have to watch how much I give myself to these endeavors. I have a tendency to stretch myself so thin that I become almost invisible in my own life. Online and virtual is no different.
I am realizing how much I have weeded out people in my life over the past few years. I have allowed relationships to change and morph. I can see now that the vacuum I created by doing so is being refilled now. I can see why it was important to do this work.
I am living differently. I have never been a good eater. Opting to eat crap over substance because it is easier and takes less time. This whole new deal has caused me to spend more on food than I have in a very long time. I usually ate out before. I didn’t worry about dinner because I was never home for dinner. We didn’t have a dinner time in my house since I got divorced and went back to work. I just couldn’t juggle it all. Today, I can see myself reorienting towards family dinner. Even though it is only Grace and I. I am finding the time to actually cook things and sit down and eat them. My life before didn’t really give me time for that. Perhaps I will eat a virtual meal with my parents. Perhaps I will create a virtual dinner club with The Tribe. A monthly date where we all come together online and eat a meal together from our respective homes.
I am concerned with what I have today. What I need today. I do not need to shop for much. Clothes and shoes were a huge monthly expense for me and now I am kinda horrified at how much I already have that I don’t wear. All my high heels are pretty much worthless now because I am not going anywhere to wear them. My entire wardrobe consists of sweaters and leggings. That is my new uniform. I am actually making myself have daytime clothes and night time clothes. Just so that I can delineate my life into some order.
I have always been active but now every hike I go on is magical. Every minute I get to spend outside solace and comfort for me. I have always found those things in nature but now I find more there. I find more answers and more comfort. I am concerned now for my health and well being in a way that I wasn’t before. I took my health for granted and now live every day checking in with my body so as quickly identify if I have the virus. I am taking supplements and making sure to move my body every single day. I am making time for that in a way that I just wasn’t able to before.
My life has been given a complete make over without my consent or really participation. It is amazing what is happening across the world. It feels like the universe is telling us that we got too far over our skis. We were paying too much attention to things that didn’t really matter. We all needed to stay home and regroup. Reprioritize our lives, our selves and how we relate to each other.
I am grateful for the reset. But I also recognize that there is an underlying fear that gnaws at me in the stillness of it all. The uncertainty reaching up through the new peaceful order and shaking it. I cannot run from that. I cannot hide. It is there. That is why I think this is a brave new world. We must all go on, moving forward, accepting our new limits, preparing for whatever comes and finding a way to love, connect and enjoy our lives in this constantly changing time. For me, I am going to embrace this new world order as bravely as I can, forgive myself when I fall short and endeavor to help those about me when their nerve falters. Today I will be grateful for this life just as it is in this moment: I am alive. I am healthy. I am here. I am willing to be of service. I am employed. I am anchored in the shifting sands of the present.