Erin's Journals

Monday, February 28, 2022

Just a thought… You know it’s funny: life just turns out to be a series of disappointments with just enough time between them for the next one to catch you by surprise. [Bradley Jackson, The Morning Show]

You can watch a video version of this journal on my Facebook page, or here on YouTube.

I know, that’s not the kind of cheery start to these journals that you expect, but honest to goodness, when I heard Reese Witherspoon’s character say those words on an episode of Apple’s The Morning Show, I had to stop the show and write them down.

A series of disappointments with just enough time between them for the next one to catch you by surprise.” Cynical? Indeed. But true enough to be funny, too. You know what’s not disappointing these days, though? The number of people in cities and towns across this globe of ours coming out in support of the people of Ukraine and their brave president Zelensky.

As I write this, everything is evolving moment by moment in Eastern Europe and beyond. But one thing is constant: you. If you’re overwhelmed by a feeling of weltschmerz…

…you are certainly not alone. And, of course, the Germans have the perfect word for it; they gave us “schadenfreude” after all!

You’ve got to take care of you while this is all going on. Like the Serenity Prayer says, “…the Courage to Change the Things I Can…” so make that donation to the Canadian Red Cross, to be matched by our federal government, up to 10 million dollars. And as for the “Accept the Things I Cannot Change” part, this is where your self-care comes in.

NPR had a really great article the other day. To pare it down to almost Twitter-length points, I’ll share the important tips they had on how you can make sure you stay steady and take care of you.

First, breathe. There are many methods for meditation on the go, but here’s a five finger breathing exercise. Hold your hand up in front of you, tracing your fingers as you breathe in, going up the finger, and exhale going down. Some people use this in the dentist’s office. I use it while I’m driving. KIDDING.

Next, get moving! You don’t have to jump on the bike – indoors these days for the most part – just busy yourself with something other than the news and something that makes your brain go down another road. A book? A recipe? A craft? Deep cleaning? (Okay, that was silly – who wants to deep clean?) Have your own cabinet shuffle and move out the spices that came into your house before the new millennium did. True story: yesterday I found a bottle of Sterisol mouthwash in the bathroom that expired in 2010. Did I throw it out? No I did not.

Nourish yourself. Although chocolate is truly one of the food groups and there’s no judgment here, make sure you’re taking care of your body’s nutritional needs.

Stay connected. If you’re worried, chances are someone you love is, too. Or if they’re not, perhaps they’ll be just the person you need to talk to right now. Plus, we’re still taking a lot of Covid precautions, most of us, as the virus hasn’t stopped just because we’re tired of it. So, yes, we still need to make that connection. Phone, email, text, in-person visit – whatever takes you out of your own head and reminds you that we’re all in this together.

And finally – although not this moment please – sign off. It’s okay not to be hooked into the latest news, videos and crystal clear images – some inspiring, some horrifying. Most of us cannot handle a constant stream or a barrage of information and misinformation. Just step away from your device, limit your intake and decide which reliable news sources you will go to.

Have hope. Give if you are able. Change what you can, accept what you can’t and have the wisdom to know the difference. And please take care of you. I’ll be back here on Thursday. Peace.

Rob WhiteheadMonday, February 28, 2022