When I committed to having monthly newsletters, I had a plan. There would be hair tips! Notes from other stylists! Tons of helpful CONTENT! I still want to do that, but this month it feels kind of false.
So many people, including myself, are struggling right now, but it's a different kind of struggle. During 2020, we were so overwhelmed, EVERYTHING was so different, we were completely distracted with trying to figure things out and just get through the days.
Then, in January, hope appeared. Vaccines! A concerted effective government roll-out to administer those vaccines! Kids are going back to school! (At least some of them, some of the time.) Oh my god it was really ending!
I was at the mental point where I was able to finally take a breath and look around, and start to even see some positive changes. I was forced to clear out so much old stuff and really start fresh, and feel hopeful about what is growing in this new space created.
But then the new reality started to sink in. It's not going to be a quick and steady progression to going back to "normal." People are getting vaccinated in record numbers, but new strains are mutating just as quickly. We're getting vaccinated, but we still have to wear masks and be paranoid. Kids are going back to school, and getting sick and spreading disease at record rates. We're slowly returning to regular routines, which includes Black men lying dead in the street and a steady drumbeat of shootings at schools and workplaces.
This is getting dark really quickly and my intention is not to be a downer, but instead a reality check. We're all living through trauma, some of us more than others, and the only way through is kindness and courage. The only way. You may feel at your wit's end, because you are. That's the reality. We are all being pushed past our limits. Our limits are way in the rearview mirror.
So what's there to do?
My main way of coping is going into perfectionist mode, trying to control and conquer what I can. Last week I sent a note to a client apologizing that her product pick-up order wasn't ready to go when she came in. (Must! Maintain! Customer! Service!) She sent back a note that stopped me in my tracks:
"No problem at all, we figured it out! After the craziness of the last year, we should all give each other a little grace, I think :-)"
It's so simple and true. Thank you, Caitlin.
We're all coping the best we can. Might as well use our limited energy to be kind to ourselves and each other, rather than propping up our outdated and useless mental constructs.
So that's why we're not having a normal newsletter this month. I wish for everyone kindness, and am amazed at our continued strength, even when it doesn't feel like we're being strong. Later we will look back and marvel at it.