The sun disappears at night
but it always comes back.
The warm weather makes way for the cold
but the warmth always comes back.
My peace, my happiness, like the sun, like the warmth
wax and wane with the fluctuations of time,
but they always, always come back.
Thank God for what always comes back.
I had put my head down and refused to attend to the truth,
but the truth is like a beach ball that you try to hold underwater—
it just keeps popping up, and sometimes it bops you in the face.
I had to look at the facts. I’ve been unemployed since mid-March,
my tax refund and stimulus check have not yet arrived,
and I’m trying to make money for groceries by sewing masks
for friends in need…
So today I went ahead and applied for unemployment.
It feels strange to be one of so many…to get in line
behind 42,363 other people waiting for help.
I wonder where the money will come from to help all of us.
I wonder why other governments seem to have all this dialed in,
and our leader is an inarticulate, pompous, ignorant clown
who apparently is telling us to drink disinfectant??
So many things to wonder about on a day like today,
when before you had refused to look at the truth,
and then finally decided to apply for unemployment.
On the mend…
drank broth for the first half of the day to regain my strength.
It struck me what an unconvenience being sick is,
and how I frequently take for granted my good health,
and how moments like what I endured yesterday
serve to remind me how fortunate I am
to be a person who is healthy most of the time.
Now I’m just so tired,
after getting my kids back from their father,
and doing the single mom thing all day,
the meals, the snacks,
throwing them outside to soak in the springtime,
diverting their attention from electronics,
encouraging connection with the earth,
getting them to read, and practice their music,
and make something with their hands…
all of this takes energy, and I am depleted.
I pray I’ll sleep well tonight.
This mama is tired beyond words.
I took a supplement that made me sick,
REALLY sick for eight hours.
And this is why I’m writing this poem from my bed,
Hoping, praying, I’ll get some rest tonight.
I remembered deep in my suffering how I am not alone in this;
Many beings suffer as I do, in this very moment.
May all beings everywhere find relief from illness and suffering.
May all beings experience their heart’s true joy.
May all beings awaken endless compassion.
May we all lift one another up during this time.
Made some more masks today.
It was a rainy day and we were inside for most of it.
I’m tired of being tired, tired of being stuck at home.
At the same time,
I’m glad to be home, glad to have time with my kids.
At the same time, I’m tired of their arguments,
tired of diverting their attention,
tired of coaxing, cajoling and bribing them
to read instead of watch TV
play outside instead of watch TV
play a game instead of watch TV
make art instead of watch TV.
The old saying goes
If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.
Maybe I should just start watching TV?
Before I met my kids’ dad I had been living on my own without a TV for years. When we were together I would periodically watch a show with him,
but I still preferred reading, writing, sewing and knitting to sitting in front of the boob tube. He left our marriage nearly three years ago, and I went back to my pre-marriage habit of never watching TV. I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve chosen to watch Netflix over engaging in my preferred pursuits; I guess I’d just rather use my brain for other things. But boy do my kids love it! I don’t want them to have too much screen time; I feel like I’m letting them down when I allow them to sit there, zombified, watching the screen for more than an hour. I dunno. Maybe it’s time to allow myself a little down time?
I stayed up until 3am sewing masks.
Today I sewed more masks.
I’m glad I can sew, glad I have fabric,
glad I can help in some way.
But I am so, so tired now.
I remember that if I’m running on empty
I can’t fill anyone else up.
Somehow I managed to make it through today,
being a mom, being an adult,
being someone who wants to help by making masks.
We had three good meals and plenty of snacks,
we went on a walk in the beautiful sunshine.
We laughed, talked, shared,
and I short-circuited plenty of little spats
with my own brand of silly mom humor.
But now I’m empty, barely running on fumes.
There’s only one thing left to do
(after showering and brushing my teeth, of course)—
GO TO BED EARLY!
When going to the grocery story feels terrifying
And your friend the chiropractor
can see only one patient at a time,
When driving through the city reminds you
of an episode of The Walking Dead
and your children are home all day, every day,
When your new normal is definitely not anything
like you ever thought normal would be—
you might be going through a global health crisis,
and you might want to give up.
But like Churchill said,
“When going through hell, keep going.”
Keep going, friends. Keep going.
I taught a Zoom yoga class tonight.
It’s so strange not to be with my students,
you know, in the same room, like I’m used to.
At the same time, here I was in Maryland,
and there were friends in Texas who joined,
one in New Jersey, and one from somewhere
I clearly wasn’t, because it was night where I was,
and she had light streaming through her window.
So although I can’t be physically present to my students,
somehow, I can be with friends all over the world.
And that, my friends, is the power of the internet.
So although this strange time comes with many challenges,
there are some unexpected silver linings,
like teaching yoga to someone a thousand miles away,
I hope you’re faring well
now that we have slowed down a little
and allowed you a chance to recoup your strength a bit.
It must be hard with so many of us human children running
all over you pretty constantly
with no thought to how your plant children
and animal children and mineral children
are affected by us screaming human toddlers over here.
I’m going to bet this is your favorite Name day in years,
now that the dolphins have returned
and the turtles have returned
and the air is cleaner
and countless other places on your beautiful body
have had a chance to rest and heal.
Mother, thank you.
Thank you for your support all these years.
Thank you for this life, this breath,
all of these opportunities to move and be and express
the fullness of who we are.
Mother, I pray that when this strange time
your human children are going through right now is over,
we’ll remember what really matters,
and take you into account when we make our decisions.
But I know that you love us no matter what,
and you’ll do what you have to do
to teach us what we need to learn,
as all good mothers do.
Just One of Your Many Human Children
PS You’re so beautiful and I love you!
Confession: I didn’t meditate this morning
Confession: I’m counting this as my meditation
Confession: I withheld love from myself until now,