1. Morning walks. One of the times when everything feels the same as before.
2. Good food. A mix of cooking and eating, a blend of what my body needs and what my heart wants.
3. Practice. As important as this was before, it’s even more so now. In a short writing class I took with Jena Schwartz these past few weeks, I said about it: “For me, practice is about intention, attention, grounding myself in the present moment, as it is. It is calling my energy back to my core, letting go of the planning, of the remembering, interrupting the ways I’m always abandoning myself, getting distracted or trying to control and fix things. Practice for me is surrendering to what is, letting go of my resistance in the gentlest, kindest way possible, without losing my sense of humor.”
4. Books. If you remember, some months ago, Eric and I decided we needed new furniture, bought a new sectional (keeping Sam’s favorite couch and Ringo’s favorite chair) and three new bookcases. Then the bookcases stood empty for a few months, until this week. I unloaded the books from boxes, stacked them in groups on the shelves, then proceeded to organize them. I found some books on grief, death, and joy I’d been wanting to read, spent three hours at it, had to take a break for lunch, got so so sweaty, but it was totally worth it. It took my mind off things for a bit, immersed as I was in my favorite thing: these tiny squares of magic and medicine.
5. My tiny family. I am so so so grateful for our tiny house, Eric’s job (money for groceries, health insurance, giving him something to focus on), how well the dogs have adapted to “going to work with dad,” how some moments feel totally normal, yard time where we hang out in the backyard getting some sun and fresh air without having to worry, the garden Eric is starting from seed, doing HIIT workouts with Eric, taking morning walks and naps, making each other laugh, reading in bed at night while Eric and the dogs sleep, the routine of our days when everything is so unpredictable.
Bonus joy: big salads, crunchy apples, laundry done and put away, clean sheets on the bed, warm sunny days, bird song, bees, the sunny dandelions feeding the bees, tiny green sprouts, my people healthy and safe, grocery pick-up, the internet, good podcasts (I’m working my way through Do You Need a Ride? and catching up on You Made it Weird), good books, (I sent my mom some, since she can’t go to the library or meet with any of the people she typically swaps books with, and we are both reading The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead. I sent her some other ones that I haven’t read yet but sounded good, so I’ll be happy to hear what she thinks about those), writing with the videos and prompts Laurie is sending out through her 27 Wildest Days offering (which feels like writing with Laurie, which I miss so much), video chatting with Mikalina and Chloe’ and Carrie, texting with my mom and brother, new puppies and babies (even though I can’t meet them “in person”), the good humans who continue to do their work even as they risk their own health and safety.