Doing The Best We Can With What We Have
Maybe you're stuck at home with a long list of things to do...maybe you're going to work and trying to juggle home school, chores, dinner and ALL of the things? Regardless of "what boat you are in" it's okay to not be okay. Sometimes I'm not okay too.
My most loathed saying right now.... "What's for dinner?"
A phrase heard often in my childhood was "it's fend for yourself night" that's what is for dinner people... fend for yourself! It's okay if you need to say that once, twice, three times per week. Permission granted.
So forgive yourself for all the screen time you're granting and fend-for-yourself-nights right now because we are all doing the best we can with what we have - another phrase preached to me often.
I talk on the phone now as much as I did when I was 16 with a colorful wire, see-thru landline. I have friends that are single or without children and are enduring this at home situation completely alone. I have friends that are home all day with a rambunctious toddler. I have friends that are empty nesters stuck at home with their spouse and are getting a preview of their retirement days. I have friends that are working at a hospital that is ground zero for COVID in Ohio. I have friends that are without jobs, with zero income this entire time. I have friends that have different opinions and views on the situation. Do you believe I have that many friends? LOL! But what I mean is, I hear so many stories and experiences happening right now and it affects many people in very different ways.
So what will all of those situations look like after the fact? Will we wish we had embraced it better? Had gotten more accomplished? Did we squander the plethora of opportunity? Maybe. But I always say this: people are just people. We're all in different walks of life experiencing things differently.
I am severely guilty of playing the comparison game. She got so much accomplished while at home. She got into great shape with all that time. She worked really hard on her business. She really did a good job at supporting others. WHATEVER!!! Let's stop playing that game.
A couple of weeks ago I went to the park with my daughter for a bike ride and while we were pedaling down the path I noticed so many women riding by us with the same stripe down the top of their head. Nobody is getting root touch ups! The real you is showing! Then I looked down as we rode the path and there were words written on the bike path. It reminded me of how people are just people and they do a really good job of being people.
That's sort of funny isn't it? I mean I love being able to make that stripe go away and make a beautiful transformation but, it's really neat to watch "The Great Pause" as I've heard it called showing you 'the real you'. We're all taking a closer look at what's really important. The single woman may be having some hard times in isolation but maybe she's having moments of self reflection and gaining clarity on her future? The mom with a rambunctious toddler; maybe she's finding out how creative she can be with activities, parenting, and she can see how important it is to teach them how to be independent. Maybe the pause has saved the marriage of the empty nesters by making them learn how to work together more closely. Maybe the hospital worker is innovating ways for her family to be a better team since her plate is so full. The family with zero income is learning how to manage their finances and will come out of this better than they were before and their children get to see what many of this generation do not; the value of a dollar earned.
Me? Call me an optimist, and not everyday has been a good day, but I can see the good too. I see my family coming closer together. I see my husband and I working together to take more pride in our children and our home. I see how much I was not invested in my children's education... wow. That one hurt. It's crazy because we all just go about our lives thinking we're all doing okay and then BAM it's in your face, all of your shortcomings. When I was forced to be the teacher and actually pay attention I was walking through the lessons with them and prior to that I didn't even know what they were studying because for the most part, they were doing great. As hard as it is to admit that, I'm glad the truth was unveiled to me.
The real me is teaching me so much. I may not like the real-ness that is happening on my head so much but the internal stuff is kind of cool. We can take care of the outside later, enjoy what's happening on the inside my friends. As they say, we will never have time like this again in our lifetime so let's savor it.
I miss being in the salon so much. It's a part of my identity. If I can't be in this career with people and doing what I love, I just don't know who I am as an individual. I know I'm a mom, I'm a wife and I'm so happy and proud to be those things but who I am at my core is being in relationship with people, allowing my curiosity and experience to grow, anticipating the next move or level up. I miss it so much. But at this moment right now, I'm trying really hard to savor this. I'm trying my best to be better and do better. I want these lessons I'm learning to be a part of who I become post-corona.
Repeat this to yourself with me: You're doing great. You'll come out of this remembering these feelings and thoughts and you'll remember the lessons you've learned. You're best is good enough. Breathe.
You're doing the best you can with what you have.