This past week proved to be particularly challenging for so many of my clients, as well as friends and colleagues. Walking through the city brings a needed brightness as the early signs of Spring appear. The warm air feels fresh. The cooler air keeps the parks emptier. Either has its benefits.
Though we’ve become accustom to our pandemic routines, it seems unbelievable that we’re beyond a year in the time of Coronavirus. As with all things far-fetched, it takes time and repetition to integrate the reality of these circumstances. We got through the past year (plus a few weeks) by imagining a time beyond the pandemic. At present, though, we’re left with an uncertainty that belies our peace of mind.
I am counting on the same anchors to continue getting through this. The sun rises every day. When I’m awake in time, I go to the East River to start my day. The beauty envelops me, and I let it. Though I don’t get a good view of sunsets, I do appreciate the changing lights at dusk that I witness when facing west. And I always appreciate the photographs of others’ sunsets when posted.
Then there’s meditation. Some days it’s as if I’m being lifted up. Other mornings meditating feels like a long time to be with a racing mind. Similar with a gratitude journal. Some days my heart is open, and then there are the days when I have to push for appreciation of simple things. I have so much for which to be grateful, but exhaustion and a hazy mood sometimes get the better of me.
We’ve learned a lot during this time. Though I adore the city, it has been nature that grounds me, providing peace and joyful moments. I have learned the importance of rest. Prior to March 2020, I took advantage of all the city had to offer. I lived by the Warren Zevon credo, “I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead.” Now I’m sleeping, napping, being still, resting, or simply, taking it easy to enjoy living, as best I can.
This year has slowed me down. There is still so much to get done, but my to do list is less important than listening to friends and family, doing the work I love, and looking up at the sky. Glad that Spring is in the air.
* Take a break. Sometimes stepping away is the best choice.
* Find a small smooth stone to rub when you need soothing.
* Try flavored salts. They add another dimension to dishes.
* When noticing a behavior or habit you don’t like, rather than judge, ask what might be happening that prompted the behavior, and bring compassion.
* Look up at the sky and enjoy the sun, the clouds, the stars and the moon.