Lately the world feels as if its tipped us all into an alternate reality. I’ve heard a lot of people using the phrase: ‘we are all in the same boat’ and honestly, I couldn’t disagree more emphatically. We are within the same global storm, but we are not in the same boat.
Some of our boats are huge battleships that will feel only the rocking of this storm as gentle nudges. Some of us are in a dingy clinging on for dear life having already lost the life jackets long before the waves started building. Wherever you are on this spectrum I hope that a safe harbour will be in your future soon. I hope you can find ways to show yourself love and compassion. It will look different for everyone…because we are not in the same boat.
Recently, I’ve not been able to get a quote from Alice in Wonderland out of my head. It keeps popping up in my mind. Alice says:
“It’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.
I feel that this quote has been bobbing up unannounced in my mind. I think this is because in my boat there is a lot of space. A lot more space then I’m used to. So much space that my mind on some days is like a border collie scratching at the wallpaper and chewing on the banisters. Memories from another life keep popping up. Old hurts feel fresh once again. The space in my boat is giving me an opportunity to process things that I haven’t looked at for a long time (perhaps things I’ve never looked at). Yet Alice’s words echo around me. Her childlike and simple wisdom keeps me hooked to the present.
What I am finding right now is that coming back to today is one of the few things that help with how my particular boat is shaping up. The days and weeks in which I notice the collie starting to chew can be hard. Choosing to return to the moment that I have right now result in days that allow me to sail this boat the smoothest way I can.
Below are some of the things that have been keeping me sane and adding value:
– Writing in my journal (and then shutting it…) A brilliant way to process stuff, and then give it boundaries and safety.
– Yoga, which has honestly been the most surprising revelation as I used to secretly feel very skeptical about the whole thing (this is another blog post entirely).
– Cooking. A friend of mine left a jar of chutney on my door step and it inspired me to cook up my own. It involved lots of chopping and stirring and created a wonderfully mindful morning.
– Time outside and watching Spring and colour return.
– Water colour. I’ve always loved sending cards, so during this time making the card itself has given me a lot of joy. It’s also helped boost my confidence that I can develop and learn new things.
– Reading. Alice aside, I’ve been enjoying some really snappy reads including ‘The Guest List’ by Lucy Foley. It was absolutely amazing and is wonderful escapism.
– No screens upstairs. This has been an absolute game changer and has helped my sleep no end.
– Inspecting my seeds I planted at the start of lock down, watering them and making plans for them for the summer.
All of these things cost little to nothing; yet they are acting as anchors in my days and weeks. Bringing me back to now, honoring that I cannot go back to yesterday. Your boat will be different to mine, it will perhaps need different things right now. What are acting as anchors for you right now?