It’s Sunday and we’ve gotten through the past week, a very long week punctuated with acts of kindness, moments of connection, and a backdrop of everything in bloom. It is definitely a time to practice both/and thinking, as I hear the therapist/columnist Lori Gottlieb (in response to being publicly chided for tweeting a joke) discuss the need to take the health crisis seriously and to have moments of levity and humor. Both/and, and especially using the word and in place of but was among the most useful takeaways from DBT training (dialectical behavior therapy, which combines cognitive therapy and mindfulness). I’ve been cooking and baking delicious food and I wish we could share it with others allows for both pleasure and loneliness. I’m so glad to have a big yard right now and it sure would be nice to have a roomier home.(Why is there a tiny house movement but nothing for small houses, which are far more common? Without even trying we are simplified and energy-efficient.) The word and allows gratitude and frustration, isolation and connection, fear and confidence to co-exist. It’s healthy and natural to address the scary reality of now and to make jokes, to dread the week ahead and be grateful for all the little gifts of the past week:
My neighbor asked if I wanted anything from a recent fruit shipment and left me 3 kiwis in a bag on the fence between our houses. They were delicious.
B helped V tackle some of the copious schoolwork we’ve printed out. (We used up a printing cartridge in one week!)
I suggested a 5 pm happy hour from our stoops and we had an impromptu social distance adjusted gathering with some neighbors, which we plan to do again (with advance notice so others can join).
I went for a walk with my cousin in the park, with a strictly enforced 6 feet distance. We saw so many trees in bloom and chatted to the sound of birds singing and woodpeckers hard at work.
We just had a family zoom call, a nice way to see each other and catch up on our various weeks at home in NYC, Denver, NJ, and the Boston and Philly area.
I am not looking forward to the next week and yet, I’ll be mindful of more things to add to the list. What made your week better?