Life is different.

Life is different, plans have been waylaid but we are here and we are safe. We had planned for a family vacation with my sister in laws (and families) to meet in Florida in May-my kids have never been to Disney and we were looking forward to a BIG freaking family vacation that we have not yet experienced. I can taste the drinks on the beach, feel the sun on my skin, envision the sights at the market, and hear the cackling laughter shared. 

BUT it looks like another year will pass without a big fat family vacation. So, I will keep this vision tight until we make it a reality....But what really matters most? I mean seriously, should I be pissed about a freaking vacation right now? Maybe not but part of me is. But I am learning to pivot, be present and find opportunity. 

Tinker Falls 4.14.2020

As a nurse-not front-line but still working (decreased hours) in a medical office with frequent contacts with people as well as helping kids adjust to their new norm of home learning and the added concern of keeping everyone in my family safe, healthy and happy-a toll physically and mentally. 

I have been thinking about "What matters most" lately. Yes, we have basic needs that need to be met-food, shelter, etc. BUT what matters most in our lives. This has been a time of contemplation for me-I love my family and friends so much and life in general to me-is about the relationships I have. The people I love. It's during this time-I wish I had a magic wand the most. 

So, I have been talking to my friends a little bit more, checking in and seeing how they are doing and have found everyone is experiencing life differently now-and these are just a handful of scenarios...
  • I have nurse friends who are working the front line and even several have  chosen out to push thru fear and accept out of town assignments to head into the danger zone to do what they can to help. This is hard. 
  • I have friends who are staying safe at home with their families.  They have been going through various stages for lack of a better term. Some have started out and stayed strong yet others are lost in despair and fear. This is hard.
  • I have friends with family and friends in hospitals and nursing homes that they can not visit or see and many of them struggling right now, my heart goes out to you. This is hard. 
  • I have friends who are self employed who have ZERO income right now. This is hard.
  • I have friends whom are unemployed -many for the first time ever, trying to navigate unemployment benefits and figure out a plan. This is hard.
  • I have friends who are essential employees and some hours have been cut-and others increased. This is hard.
  • I have friends who are primary caretakers of elderly family members who are scared to death of bringing something home to their loved ones. This is hard.
  • I have friends who are single parents or live alone who feel more alone than ever right now. This is hard.
  • I have friends who are struggling with helping their kids with the school work while providing their needs and supporting them emotionally. This is hard
  • I have friends who can not pay the bills or get to the store for food. This is hard. 
  • I have friends who are trying to manage all of it and feel that they are at the end of their rope. 
  • I have friends who feel like they want to give up. This is hard, but please DON'T.
Truth is; it is HARD (no matter what situation) but YOU all are doing the best you can, give yourself some grace. Each of you are doing your part and it is important and needed. This too shall pass. 

So many different situations, it is hard right now to offer love and support...or is it? 

This is a time we have never faced before and many of us our lost in despair or fear or uncertainty, 
Our future is uncertain, there are more and more rules being announced in effort to decrease the curve and keep as many of us safe as possible but it takes a toll. We need to wear masks, go out on "our days" for essentials and not hug our friends yet waive from a distance. 

I miss my friends, my family, the get togethers, the social distancing on my own terms. It is hard. But we need to learn to pivot. We simply can not give up. We must stay strong and carry on, friends. I am not saying to not feel those feelings that come up, we all must allow ourselves to grieve, feel but them trust and release and look for opportunities. 

In our family-we have now celebrated 3 birthdays and a holiday in quarantine times-not ideal but we made the most of it. My birthday was beautiful. I was off from work, helped the kids with their school work and we hopped in the car and went to Tinker falls. Just being in nature, raised my vibration to a level of Ecstasy, grounded my worries and made my isolated birthday more enjoyable. My husband brought home dinner which was AMAZING and it was a warm spring day to sit on my porch with my oldest daughter with coffee and laughs. 

How can we make the most of these unprecedented times?

For me, whenever I feel down, sad, hopeless-what helps me feel better about my situation is helping others. Doesn't it feel good to you, when you can put a smile on someone elses face?
  • Maybe its a phone-call to someone who is alone, an email, a text-to let someone know you care and you are here. 
  • Maybe its sending a gift or a card in the mail.
  • Maybe its offering to get groceries for your elderly neighbor
  • Maybe its giving your postman or fedex delivery guy a gift-card and some sanitizer. 
  • Maybe its looking for your self employed friends-offering to buy a gift certificate and give it to someone who has been stuck at home and when this is over-that person can go get their hair done (bless two people)
  • Maybe its buying a gift certificate from a restaurant and giving it to an older couple who would enjoy going for dinner once per week and can't right now but when this is over-they can enjoy a nice treat. 
  • Maybe its throwing a few extra bucks to that musician who is playing for your entertainment on Facebook-to help them stay afloat while they are out of work and bringing their joy of music to us.
  • Why not call your massage therapy friends who are out of work-buy a gift certificate and give it to an essential employee who is busting their ass during this time. 
  • Maybe its playing ding, dong ditch and leaving a surprise at someones home.

What can you do to bring a smile to someone elses face today? We are all in this together and we have the opportunity to show kindness, compassion and love. WE have that in us to give. Nothing is too small or large to do or give. #HUMANITY

What activities can you do right now to help you through?
  • Spring cleaning-great time for that deep clean your home needs. 
  • Organize a space in your home-maybe create a reading or meditation nook.
  • Home repairs-that you can do-fix that broken hinge repaint that bathroom you haven't had time to do. Pintrest and YouTube have great tutorials!
  • Clear out things you don't need-someone else may need them or save for a huge garage sale when this is over.
  • Wake up with gratitude-when you are grateful for ALL you have that opens up the universal laws to give back. Before getting out of bed think of 3 things you are grateful for-BONUS points if you write them out in your journal. 
  • Journaling-even if its just writing down what you did that day, your thoughts, dreams, aspirations. No matter what mood I am in, I find that daily journaling helps me process and release.
  • Take time for self development-get into the habit now if you haven't before and learn something new, create a self care practice, audible and podcasts are great to listen to while you have the time or in the car or while scrubbing the kitchen,
  • Meditate-time in meditation daily can soothe the soul and bring more peace to your life-I have several friends who are sharing meditations on Facebook. 
  • Career evaluation-Many of my friends are seriously considering a career or job change-do some research if this is you to find other opportunities to follow your passion or calling. 
  • Education-there are online classes and tutorials out there that can keep your mind busy and you could learn a new skill-weather cooking classes or art classes or whatever inspires you.
  • Time in nature-the parks are still open-go explore and get grounded in the peace that nature brings.
  • Write that book you have always wanted to-80% of people have wanted to write a book-Grab your notebook or laptop and carve out set time during your day to write it.
  • Get crafty-I love DIY projects by finding stuff from around the house, this is also fun to do with the family. 
  • If you find the days passing and you realize you haven't done what you wanted to because you get sucked into news, the Facebook or whatever-make a daily schedule and use a timer-to help you accomplish things at home. Paint, write poetry, read that book-whatever. You will feel good and get activities that bring you joy back into your life. 
USE this time as an opportunity for personal development and growth; for helping others; for evaluation of your life, dreams and goals. 
How will you spend your time?
What matters most to you? 
What can you do to spread a little sunshine in someone elses life right now? 

I can't wait to see how we change our lives and the world by learning to pivot to what matters most.