Call it the tail end of the winter blues or being slightly overscheduled recently coupled with our sweet cat who was feeling under the weather--after a week of being in high gear with worry and unease, today finds me a bit like I just woke up from a long nap; certainly coming out of slumber but still groggy and not fully ready to join the waking world just yet. This evening when trying to think of what I would post for Motivation Monday, I decided I would post a letter to myself to help me get ready for a brand new week and thought I'd share it here in case you needed a little note to self to let you know that a new week can bring new possibilities and that no matter where we find ourselves right now, we are all going to be alright.
I know how much you have suffered this week from anxious thoughts, worry, and all sorts of monsters that your mind has dreamed up. I know how tiring it can be to worry about what is, what might be, if you are capable enough, creative enough, strong enough, savvy enough, and not too crazy to handle what comes and keep putting one foot in front of the other. On anxious days, this feels especially difficult to do. The anxiety is made worse by fearing that you are alone in these experiences. You are not alone.
I want to tell you that it's ok to hit pause and take a break from life in these moments. It's ok to not feel like making anything, to not feel like you want to be around people, and to stay in your pajamas all day with your cat curled up next to you. Part of a creative life is about getting creative with your own rules and routine. Remember that you alone are in charge of what you feel is best for you. Embrace and exercise that right to be your own best guardian in these moments.
Hang tight and ride the waves of the storm. Drink a glass of water and eat something that sounds good to you. Don't underestimate the power of a hot shower and clean sheets. Call a friend and tell them how you feel. Feel afraid that they might think you're being over-dramatic or that you are, as you fear, crazy. Call them anyway. Clear your schedule if you need to and take the time that is yours to treat yourself sweetly so that you can make space to breathe, to rest, and to take care of yourself.
Your superpower as a kid was your imagination. It still is. Imagination is not just for making up a play from think air or improvising dance moves to Queen in your kitchen. Oh, no. Imagination can do so much more--it can allow you to see the possibilities that might manifest themselves tomorrow or next week or next year. Imagination will help you to believe that tomorrow can be different from today, that this thing you feel now might recede and allow you to feel the joy and wonder that can seem so elusive in these moments. Imagination can also help you to see a world where worries are not in fact banished never to return, but come in waves like the ocean, and that the rhythms of worries, joy, isolation, connection, fear, and trust are as steady as the sun rising each day and the gravity that holds you to the earth. Imagination can help you to see that this kind of life can be comforting and beautiful and know in your heart that while moments of carefree joy eventually give way to worry, in time, that worry will pass and give way to something gentler and you will be able to imagine that great joy is just around the corner as well. Imagination can help you believe in the comfort of such constant change.
It's a brand new week and I know that there will be joys and play and things to think about and make and do, sprinkled in among the anxieties like tiny pieces of gold among the stones. Collect them when you can and know that life isn't about building a house of gold, but taking the precious glittering strands you find each day and weaving them into the very fabric of yourself until they become YOU. Life is not about seeing the while picture yet, but taking it piece by piece and continuing to know deep down in your bones that it's worth putting together.
Take care, my Sweetheart. I will always be right here, to celebrate with you when things are good, and to sit in the trenches when they get tough. We are in this together. I know you can do this.
Wishing you all a week of caring for your awesome selves, wherever you are.