Yesterday was *not* a good day. I felt a little better after I wrote it all down, but I was still all akimbo. And then, friends. After I posted, one of my friends sent me this message:
Renovations are horrible at the best of times!!! Adding the stress of this situation, not seeing a loved one etc etc is really easy to miss the accomplishments you achieved today! You were out w your kids, I saw you!, you journeyed, you spoke with friends, you showed your kids that a change of scenery and asking friends for help is real…i could go on. We are so tough on ourselves:( decrease your to do list to 2-3 max items per day and if you need a tea break we can have a social distance one together at the park!
I felt seen. I could begin to see what she saw when we walked by her family and waved. Her message buoyed me and, as I went to bed, I felt myself begin to be able to reframe – not to deny my worries, but also to see the other side of them. So today, a list.
- We now know that both our fire alarm and our carbon monoxide detectors work (extremely well).
- Some of the guys on our construction team have partners whose work is tenuous or who have already been laid off; the guys working here still have a steady income.
- They are really good at their job & continue to renovate in a way that is both safe (because there’s a lot of crazy in our 120-year-old home) and beautiful.
- We have friends who let us use their house no questions asked – even if we have to scale a fence and break in to do it. They’ve even suggested that we continue to use it until they get home – and their cat will be overjoyed to see us regularly.
- The boys and I got out of the house several times. We even went to the local bakery – which is open & running with careful social distancing – and chatted with the workers who know us so well that they remember our account number. And the running tab means we don’t even have to use cash!
- When the noise was too much, I was able to take a long walk and talk to friends.
- My mother is safe at home – and has a safe home and people around her who love her and will take care of her, even if she lives alone. My sister – whose children’s school was cancelled until the end of the year – has lots of support and is starting a new routine. And her boys love to read.
- Andre let our exchange student drive on the way to see his girlfriend. He was *delighted* – even if we do own a minivan.
- We have tons of time to cook right now, but we ordered dinner from the restaurant where we held our rehearsal dinner 13 years ago – it’s Sri Lankan and delicious. They were so happy to see Andre that they gave him some of the food they’d had to put in their freezer. Our local businesses need our support.
- This moment in time is nerve-wracking – like watching a vase fall to the floor in slow motion: it’s not cracked yet, but we know what’s coming. Still, when I had a bad day, I was reminded of the strength of my extended community. And I have food and a (not *quite* complete) home. I am lucky because one good night’s sleep & the support of my friends and family allow me both the space to be upset and the space to reframe.
Ok, Wednesday: I’m ready for you!