1. I’m still here. Healthy, safe, and so loved. My life is filled with privilege and good fortune that I absolutely don’t deserve (at least not any more than anyone else) and that fills me with gratitude.
2. The first COVID-19 vaccines. I watched videos of people receiving them that first day, and cried and cried — for all those we’ve already lost, all those still suffering, for all those we might be able to save, and all those who worked (and continue to do so) so hard to keep us safe.
3. Practice. I think I’ve had a regular daily writing and meditation practice for somewhere around 13 years now. Yoga came just a bit later, and dog has been here for close to 20 years. I would not be who I am without any of them, probably wouldn’t still be here.
4. Eric. He’s not always handy, but when he is, he goes BIG. For example: when our lilacs filled and split the old clay drain pipes closest to our house with roots, Eric saved us $2500 dollars by digging the trench the plumber needed to access and replace them; and another time when the heat and AC control dial in our SUV was broken and they said it would cost $1500 to fix it, he got online and figured out how to fix it with a soldering iron he bought for about $25.
His most recent fix was the computer that runs our TV. We don’t have a typical TV setup, but rather a computer hooked up to a flat-screen smart TV that acts as the monitor for the computer where we can access the internet to run Netflix, Hulu, etc. It also has a CD drive so we can play movies we own on DVD. The computer we had running our TV (nine years old at this point) died when Eric plugged in the Christmas tree. We’ve been hooking up my laptop but that’s not ideal since I need to use it for other things. We were going to order a new computer but Eric decided to see if he could switch our the power supply with one from an old computer we had in the garage. It worked! I am so impressed. He also makes amazing pies, so I think I’m keeping him.
5. My tiny family, our tiny home. It still feels a bit weird from time to time to have “only” one dog, (not that Ringo is “only” anything). All of my Christmas duties are done except for a few last minute things and cooking, and now that Eric is on break from work, the season of rest has officially begun, and I am not mad at that.
Bonus joy: Christmas lights, clementines, honey roasted peanuts, tiny marshmallows in my coffee, good podcasts, good books (I just finished The Henna Artist, which was a nice break from the dystopian fiction I’d been reading, and I finally got a copy of The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Macksey and I’m in the process of gifting it to just about everyone I know because it’s just that good), good movies and TV and music (especially holiday themed), a bit of snow on the ground (I hope we get a lot more), texting with my mom and brother, a warm shower, down blankets and pillows, “singing” with Ringo, writing with Laurie and our Friday morning group (who are all coming back for another season in the new year), hanging out and writing with Mikalina, frozen pizza (which can be weirdly yummy when you are so sick of cooking and eating your own food), resting in the afternoon even if it doesn’t turn into a full on nap, reading in bed at night while Ringo and Eric sleep.