It’s been a wild time. Shitty actually, a shitty time.
All is not lost. Here is a list of things I found delightful/awesome/encouraging/uplifting in 2020 and so far in early 2021:
- Journaling every day since March 13th
- Cooking pork larb, a simplified Thanksgiving, and a lot of chili
- Dan Carlin’s “Hardcore History” podcast
- Open Streets with friends
- Our backyard – oh lord thank goodness for this
- My 41-day running streak
- Watching surfers at Rockaway Beach
- Stoop cocktails
- Playing the radio all day in the house.
- Family laundry folding.
- Had a blast doing a puzzle (A puzzle) and now owning puzzle accessories. I better do more puzzles
- Heat pads
- Wood burning fires even if my husband says the wood isn’t working well
- The Atlantic Ocean
- Yelling along with the protests that marched past our house
- Pot banging for essential workers
- Noticing the brightness of stars on Martha’s Vineyard
- The dog digging on the beach
- The smell of the sourdough bread my husband keeps baking
- The “At Home” section of the NYTimes
- Having a year where not having plans was just fine
- Making collages
- Having ~ two months with way less daily routine.
- I know he’s going a little crazy, but I really like having my husband WFH.
- Nearly daily check in calls with my mother. We share what we’re making for dinner.
- BIDEN HARRIS!!!! And the reveal of the upcoming cabinet members
- Adding cardboard figures from a diorama Avery made in 2015 to my journal…then throwing out the very dusty diorama
- The awning on our deck
- Having access to a pool this summer and a chance to see (from a distance!) two of the grandparents
- Getting creative with leftovers
- This from “Before The Internet” NewYorker: “Before the Internet, you would just sit in an armchair with a book open on your lap, staring into space or staring at a decorative broom on the wall—kind of shifting back and forth between those two modes of being.”
- Thinking maybe I’ll start a newsletter (I haven’t)
- Learning about Mary Delany
- The article “Fuck the Bread. The Bread is Over”
- Lowering my standards for resolutions, habits and anything else meant to make us better but which actually drives us into death-spiral of failure despair
- And also “Where Did My Ambition Go?” by Maris Kreizman
- The kids. Watching Avery play soccer. Taking Aiden to the skatepark. Listening to them in school. Seeing them make themselves lunch (so much ramen). Sending them out to walk the dog. Having them sleep past 8am.
- Utilizing the reopened public library.
- Bisa Butler’s portraits
- Decorating for Christmas, then undecorating for Christmas
- Black Lives Matter everywhere
This poem, Things to Do in the Belly of a Whale from Dan Albergotti
Measure the walls. Count the ribs. Notch the long days.
Look up for blue sky through the spout. Make small fires
with the broken hulls of fishing boats. Practice smoke signals.
Call old friends, and listen for echoes of distant voices.
Organize your calendar. Dream of the beach. Look each way
for the dim glow of light. Work on your reports. Review
each of your life’s ten million choices. Endure moments
of self-loathing. Find the evidence of those before you.
Destroy it. Try to be very quiet, and listen for the sound
of gears and moving water. Listen for the sound of your heart.
Be thankful that you are here, swallowed with all hope,
where you can rest and wait. Be nostalgic. Think of all
the things you did and could have done. Remember
treading water in the center of the still night sea, your toes
pointing again and again down, down into the black depths.
To conclude, ruminating on this: “Don’t get too precious, don’t get too fearful, stay steady.” Toni Morrison