One Year

We are rounding out a year of the Pandemic.

Tell me how you are doing. I’ll start. It’s been a rollercoaster. I’ve learned many things about myself and some of it with much resistance. I remember hugs, but have only had a few in the past 12 months. Those have been deeper, tighter, and longer than in the past. I’ve sat alone and watched my anxiety, and ADHD play out in front of me like a stage performance. I’ve laughed harder than I usually do and I’ve cried harder too. When there’s no where to go and no one to see, the redness and swelling of your eyes doesn’t have to be disguised or covered up. I’ve deepened relationships-rekindled some and forged new ones, all with the click of a key on a computer. I’ve slowed down. A TON.

My dogs get more walks. I hear the birds. I watch clouds.I traveled across the country during election week, and witnessed the extreme diversity of our country. I found most people willing to look me in the eyes and smile but for brief moments as we passed at rest stop. I stopped compulsively cleaning. Yeah, that was my jam. Always a perfectly spotless house. I’ve shopped more online than ever. It’s too easy not to. I should stop.

I learned that phone calls are a thing! Voices are gold. Walking with a masked friend while maintaining distance is a rare and luxuriously intimate experience. I learned that I prefer my own cooking. I spent a lifetime going out with friends and family, but it wasn’t the restaurant food or the bar drinks that I craved-it was the company.

I lost my high level of athletic fitness after a severe bout with Covid. This has been devastating to me as a person, an athlete, and a coach. Ten months later, and I still struggle with endurance or intensity. Depression slithered in. I gained weight. I drank more. I started having panic attacks again. I told myself it was ok. I stopped sleeping. I almost stopped caring. My inner badass, competitor self called a halt to that nonsense though and I got back on a new track. I’m been working out regularly again since November, and eating clean and healthy. My workouts are shorter and with less intensity as BC (before Covid) but they are consistent. Oh, yeah, and I take more rest days.

I’m doing dry January. Guess what? I’m sleeping again!

I’ve taken online classes in subjects I’d never otherwise allowed the time to pursue. Irish step dancing! Spiritual classes. I played around with a few online dating sites just for fun. Good Lord that’s quite the wormhole.I got certified to teach Gravity Yoga. This was a personal journey to heal my broken spine. It’s working more than I could have dreamed. Now I’m conducting Zoom classes for individuals and groups. WHO KNEW?

I bought some beautiful paint by number kits and started one 2 months ago. It triggered all my “perfectionistic” obsessions and it sits half done on my dining room table. If I never finish it, that’s ok. I’ve watched more TV this year than all the past 40 years of my life. Most of it isn’t memorable and I forgot the names of the shows and movies I watched. I have all but stopped watching the news this month. I can’t personally change anything happening in the world today, except for in my own little corner, so why ingest all that negative energy?

I have a new mantra, thanks to Russel Wilson, courtesy of his brother, Harry: ” I am made for this.” And thanks to Trevor Moawad, I’m working on keeping my mind neutral. When things are negative, and you can’t go to the positive, at least keep your mind neutral. I love that one.

I’m almost ready to donate most of my clothes. I dragged and shipped boxes of clothes, shoes, and boots across 3400 miles, just to set up a closet and take up space. Sure, some day I’ll wear them again, but the variety holds no allure to me now. Except for my running shoes. I can never have enough of those, don ‘t-cha know.

I don’t bother with makeup anymore. Once in a while, but not every day. Don’t get me wrong, I’l slather that shit on and don a glamorous dress and spike heels to celebrate the end of this nightmare pronto! I haven’t given up my love for all things sparkly that much.

Speaking of the end of this nightmare, I’m longing for that day. We will emerge different, but more aware. I believe we will have changed, but most of us will be more authentic. I hope. When we can safely discover the new normal, the new “free from the virus” normal, please don’t be shocked when I grab hold of you, squeeze you tightly, bury my head in your chest and bawl my eyes out. I love you all.

Until then…

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