Last night was tough. I think those of us who caught part or all of it were a little shocked. We had opinions about it and maybe even a chance to voice these opinions.
Then we went to bed.
Then some of us woke up in a world of haze and danger to our lungs. The fact that it is familiar might actually make it feel worse rather than better.
All this to say: past the opinions, past the drama, I think something deep might be affecting us this morning, and I want to talk about it for a second.
You know, we may not be used to watching three powerful men talk over each other and say mean things to each other and produce nothing - in an official, controlled environment.
We may see this on the streets of Seattle, sometimes or a basketball court, maybe.
This was different.
And in its difference, I think it might have really affected us. I think we might feel a dose of extra something, today. Might be anger. Might be despair. Might be shame. Might be something else or it might be all of it.
I know I feel it, and no, the smoke is not helping.
So I’m thinking that today is a good day for Extreme Self Care, however that looks for you. Extreme Kindness to the ones we may encounter today, also.
We may have reached a different level of shook up, today. And this calls for an antidote.
AND maybe I’m fully projecting and just talking about myself, here. But just in case, I wanted to bring it up.
I’m afraid that our nervous systems have forgotten what the mundane, nonthreatening days feel like.
I’m afraid for my sons and the thoughts that I hear in their heads.
I’m afraid of choices ahead and of lack of choices ahead.
I’m afraid of where will thousand of people sleep as winter is coming.
I’m afraid of meanness and harshness and the forgetting of our deep tender humanness.
I look at a brand new baby, born early and perfect. And somehow, I become less afraid because in her perfection, She reminds me that Life also, truly is perfect.
Two years ago was my mom’s last birthday. We knew it. She knew it.
She barely had enough breath to blow the one candle on the pink frosted cupcake I bought her from the pink hotel across the water. The hotel that had welcomed my family when they first arrived from France, a lifetime ago.
Probably to make up for not being able to hold her and tell her sweet words, I had asked many people who loved her to send her a happy birthday video message. As she listened to one after the next, I’ll never know whether they brought her more joy than stress.
Last night, a wave of sadness crashed over me as I was about to dip my paintbrush in a jar of water. It kind of took my own breath away. It was physical before it became emotional. Or at least if felt that way.
Life keeps a tight calendar and very few big anniversaries go by completely quietly.
In a world more and more devoid of rituals, we don’t get to bypass all of them, and I am grateful for the built-in sacredness.