What is this new world we’re living in?
Some places I go everyone is wearing masks. Some places I go, no one is wearing them. Some people want to hug, others shrink back from any kind of touching. What are we supposed to be doing?
It seems to me like everyone is reeling.
Many of us are asking what happens next? Do we just go on like nothing happened? Have we learned anything? Do we just write off 2020 as the weirdest year and not look back?
These are the questions I’ve been asking myself this week.
I go in and out of a cautious optimism, having received the first of my vaccination shots. But then I hear news about new strains of the pandemic that are cropping up and wonder if that optimism is warranted. Who can say? We know more than we did at the beginning of 2020, but the one thing that COVID has taught us is that we know far less than we think we do.
My business is thriving but I’ve started waking up again at 4:00 a.m. worrying I’ve forgotten things. Worrying I can’t get it all done. Worrying about what happens next.
I have a feeling I’m not the only one experiencing this stage of what I’m calling pandemic perma-strain. It feels a lot like disorientation. It also feels like I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop.
I’ve been leaning on my sanctuary spaces and philosophy for stability. Lighting candles. Writing in my journal. Snuggling with my dogs. Taking time for myself (although admittedly not as much as I really need or want).
But I’m also out in the world more now. I traveled to see my mom for the first time in over a year. I had a gathering of friends and colleagues in my new design studio. It’s nice to see people and be with people but also I’m having that out-of-body experience of living in the moment yet at the same time watching myself live as if I’m somehow separate.
I woke with an image of a caterpillar in my mind this morning. What if this feeling of disorientation is because we’ve been inside a chrysalis (our homes) for the past year and now we’re wriggling out of that casing but blinded by the brightness of the light and the rush of sensory input? Maybe that heavy feeling is because we’re dragging the new wings we’ve grown over these long months, not realizing it’s time to unfurl them and fly?
And just maybe this is when we realize that true sanctuary is not in our homes, it’s deep inside us. And we carry it with us as we go back out into the world, soaring with our brand new wings, fluttering on the breeze.
In this way, we are always safe. We are always protected. We are always home and inside our sanctuary.
What about you? How are you feeling? What are you experiencing and what have you learned? Is your sanctuary serving you? I’d love to hear. Drop me a note in the comments below.
With love and gratitude,