Tonight I'm going to make an accounting of the good things I experienced. Even in the midst of chaos and difficulty, I have cultivated the ability to pay attention to the little things. The practice pays off - especially on days or weeks like this.
1. My daughter's requests for hugs
2. Long stem roses from ALDI for a bargain
3. Seth Meyers' monologue
4. Laughter with a co-worker
5. Deep breaths
6. Choosing to walk by my fountain even though it's closed for the winter. The broader beauty is recognizing that I no longer feel the need to avoid things that are painful or disappointing. The thought had crossed my mind to stop walking by the fountain during autumn and winter, but then I realized that I was avoiding the sad feelings I have missing the water. It's better to feel them and move on. Those feelings dissipate much more quickly when faced head on.
6. Gregory Alan Isakov's voice, music, and especially his lyrics.
7. Wind and sunshine
9. Being told that I look like I'm in my LATE TWENTIES by my new Panera friend, Elizabeth.
10. This epiphany: I have determined that the Trump presidency is going make me bolder, braver, and more loving. All the scary things I have faced in the past five years--my dad's illness, continuous job losses, staying afloat financially in spite of said job losses, my own health scares, divorce, and post-divorce life--have prepared me for this time. I am determined to be an ally for vulnerable people in this new world. One of the ways I plan to do that is to initiate contact with people who do not look like me in all their beautiful diversity. I want to create spaces of safety, inclusivity, and rest wherever I go, which leads to this exchange:
11. At Panera, I noticed a beautiful man who was wearing the heck out of a scarf around his neck. He had such flair, and I told him so. "I love your scarf," I said. He looked at me for a second and then smiled. "Thank you very much. I like your look too." I smiled back and sat in the table ahead of his. I am a proponent of Random Acts of Kindness. It felt so good to interact with this lovely stranger. As Glennon Doyle Melton says all the time, We Belong To Each Other, and this exchange made that phrase pulse with truth.
12. Imagining that my walk back to my office was a scene from a musical and dance-walking all the way back to work.
13. Picking up a handful of trash.
13. Vulnerability, authenticity, and presence in my friendships.
14. Playing volleyball with my friends and daughter at church and being less afraid of the ball. And being a better contributor to the team. Also not bruising my wrist when I served this evening.
15. Lemonade from Chik-fil-A.
16. Having the energy to write this list while snuggled warm and cozy under my covers in my bedroom that is now my sanctuary from the world.
17. My electric kettle from a friend that makes my room feel like a hotel.
18. It's Friday-eve.