I shifted my routine earlier this week to catch the sunrise. Typically I relish the space between sleep and daytime. The sweet spot of the morning. Following those moments I shift into meditation, then move on from there with coffee and the rest of the day. As soon as I awoke I brushed my teeth and ran to the East River to get a glimpse of the sunrise.
It was a cloudy day, and the sun was hidden. No bright colors, just hues of grey. At first I was disappointed. It’s not often I get out to take a peek of the sun coming into view. But then it occurred to me that this was a perfect metaphor for this time in transition. We all want to see the sun but instead we’re stuck with gray skies. The anticipated bright horizon more of an idea than a clear vision.
We expected, as we’ve done in the past, for things to move along until we could live again as we had pre-pandemic. Instead, we’re in this mist. Some of our days look similar to what we’ve known before, but it’s still hazy and not clear enough to navigate straight ahead. We’re living in a miasma of uncertainty.
We thought that we would have to endure fear, loss, and ambiguity for a fixed period of time. Then we could face our futures because of these important, albeit, unwelcome experiences. We could frame the pandemic with stories of what we’ve endured along with life lessons we were forced to learn. But the discomfort has expanded to an indefinite stretch of time. We are still reeling. Our fears remain palpable.
Nevertheless, I am going to continue to look for the sunrise when I wake up too early. And, when the clouds are heavy I will find simple ways to comfort myself. I’ll walk, drink water, read something fun, eat a peach, and rest well. I’ll take care of myself as best I can, then I’ll see what’s needed by those I love, and by those who are in more need. I’ll continue to face my days acknowledging my limitations while moving past barriers that keep me stuck. I’ll get it wrong and try again. In that way I keep going while in transition.
- When you find you’re being hard on yourself, think about what you’re attempting to learn and shift your focus on the lesson, seeing this moment as part of your learning.
- Remind yourself that it takes time to learn patience.
- Eat a peach or other fresh fruit or vegetables. Summer is a great time to savor the land’s bounty.