One of the symptoms of the Coronavirus is a loss of smell and taste. I thought about this the other day as I sat outside and ate the perfect summer meal–a BLT with crispy bacon and a perfectly ripe tomato with fresh corn on the side. How hard it would be to not taste this meal!
This got me thinking–If I had to lose one of my five senses temporarily, which would I choose? I’m still debating. What about you?
Towards the end of my marriage, I was having a problem with the printer. For some reason, it wasn’t printing. I was sending documents, but I kept getting error messages. I’m not a techie person, so I asked my former husband to help. But he didn’t seem to understand how much this mattered to me, so it wasn’t high on his list of things to do. In fact, it wasn’t on his radar screen at all.
So the printer sat in its error state.
Weeks later, I asked for help again. He finally sat down and tried a few things, but nothing worked. I asked if we could call the Geek Squad to look at it, but he didn’t like the idea of someone monkeying around with our computer.
So again, the printer sat in its error state.
This went on for months–with me needing a printer that worked, asking for help and him not truly understanding how much this meant to me.
This question always baffles me. When I’m asked this, my reply is “Of course I’m in a relationship with him–we are relating to each other.” In my opinion, aren’t we in some type of relationship with everyone in our lives? Aren’t we in a relationship with the people in our family? With our friends? Our co-workers? Our neighbors? With ourselves?
So the question, “Are you in a relationship with him?” isn’t enough for me. There are other more meaningful questions to ask–questions that get to the heart of the things.
Because of the pandemic, I’ve been spending a lot of time alone–much more than I’d like to be. It feels like my life has hit the pause button. It reminds me of when I first left my former husband. At that point in time, the song of my life needed to change and spending time alone to pause gave me the space to think about what I wanted the next song to be.
I wrote about this pause between being married and not married in a post on the Mudroomblog.com called “Silence is Where the Magic Happens“. And although the circumstances are different today, the pandemic has created a similar pause. What’s different now, though, is that this one is collective. We are all in this one together.
I’m curious, which means I love to ask questions. Today I’m starting something new for my blog called “A Curious Question”. I’d love for you to share your responses below.
With all that is going on in the world right now, it feels like we are on the brink of some big changes. We’ve been here before, but this time, it feels different to me. This time, it feels much bigger. This time, it feels like there is serious movement towards positive and reformative change.
So my question today is:
If you could change one thing right now, what would it be?
And after you share your words, I encourage you to ask yourself:
What’s one thing I can do today to make that change happen?
Words are great–they give us the direction. But they are just the starting point. In order for change to happen, you need to take a step towards the change you seek. Until you take a step, they remain just words. As Gandhi said,
Be the change that you wish to see in the world.
Actions matter. The momentum is here for some big, positive change. And this change begins within yourself. Build on the momentum that is here right now. Start being the change you wish to see. Take one action step towards change.
Spending the last seven months on Bumble has been an educational experience.
As I mentioned in my post You Better Shop Around, I’ve been taking a dive into the wild and a bit wacky world of online dating. When I first started this foray, I quickly discovered there was a lot of things I didn’t know. I found myself googling a number of words I’d never heard before. What’s a sapiophile? A pluviophile? And then there’s all the acronyms and terms. LTR. FWB. Ghosting. And what does that symbol mean?!
There was so much to learn.
With the spread of COVID I’m taking some time to step back and evaluate the experience. For me, song titles and lyrics have a way of bubbling up in my mind to accompany what I am noticing and learning. Here are seven songs that sum up the last seven months on Bumble:
I’m a recovering benefit of the doubt giver. I’ve given someone the benefit of the doubt more often than I should have. I’ve given someone the benefit of the doubt even after my spidey sense had perked up, made me pause and think–wait…what? I’ve given someone the benefit of the doubt even when they clearly weren’t being kind or didn’t share my values. Why? Because I’m also a recovering people pleaser. Let’s just say these two traits haven’t always been a winning combination for me. So, I’m in recovery. I was set on this recovery path by a quote I recently discovered from Maya Angelou:
When someone shows you who they are, believe them; the first time.”
When I’m faced with a situation and not sure what to do or believe, a friend told me to get still and listen to my gut–that it knows.
But I have a problem with getting still.
When I am still, the silence can be agony for me. When I wait for an answer to an important question, a text reply from someone, or a response from an on-line blog on a piece I submitted, and sit in silence, it can be agonizing. When I am still, my mind makes up all kinds of stories to fill the silent space.
Maybe I’m not worth a response.
Maybe I’m too needy.
Maybe I’m too pesky and ask too many questions.
Maybe my writing is not good enough.
In her book Rising Strong, Brene Brown talks about the stories we tell ourselves, that they are often works of fiction, not based on any real information.
“When we are in pain we create a narrative to help make sense of it,” she states.
The stories that bubble up are neither healthy nor helpful. They may also be inaccurate. Still they persist.
“Shelter-in-place” feels like a virus imposed timeout. The whole world is essentially being told “go to your room”. Although it has been implemented to help curb the spread of the virus, a timeout can be good for reflection. It gives us a moment to evaluate and take stock of the situation. It helps us slow down. It provides an opportunity for us to think about our behavior and maybe make some changes.
Since I am a curious person, I’ve decided to use this timeout to think about what the virus is teaching me. Here’s a few things I have learned:
One sunny, Sunday morning, I walked down to a local bakery for a muffin. It was a beautiful day and I decided to sit at a table outside of the store and enjoy my treat right there.
A middle aged man walked up with a long haired dachshund. The dog was adorable–with curly, reddish brown fur and one blue eye and one green eye. He tied the dog outside and went in for his own bakery treat.
As the dog stood there waiting, he was alert and perky, looking up at everyone as they passed by. I watched as people pointed at the dog and smiled. Some stopped to bend down and pat his head. The dog wagged his tail in thanks, and generously smiled back in his own dog-like way. Everyone who interacted with him walked away smiling.