I crashed and burned on July 4th.
I enjoy spending Saturdays in solitude. I was too afraid to go to the parties I was invited to. I was in the mountains, and my husband was in Boulder. We agreed that, rather than fighting the holiday traffic, we would just wait until Monday to see each other. I was perfectly content, even a little excited to spend the holiday alone.
I woke up to do an early swim workout. On my way to the pool, I listened to some incredibly uplifting, but also emotional, stories of hope in the face of COVID-19. I fought back the tears as I walked into the pool to find that my master swim friends whom I was looking forward to seeing had opted out of the July 4th workout. Instead, I was sandwiched between two heavily breathing kick boarders. I fought back my tears again, as I felt a rush of anxiety each time that I lifted my head out of the water to take a breath. When I left the pool, I saw a little girl and boy dressed in red, white, and blue that reminded me of my niece and nephew who were spending the 4th of July with the rest of my family that I probably won't be able to see this year. On my way home, a drive past multimillion-dollar beautiful homes in Vail, Colorado, I listened to an interview with an African American who shared that he was having a hard time enjoying the holiday because the question of whether black lives matter was still up for debate. I felt an overwhelming sense of guilt for my white privilege and the fact that I had spent the morning feeling sorry for myself as I drove into my beautiful home in one of the most beautiful places on earth.
It was not my best holiday, and probably not the best holiday to spend alone. However, it gave me an important realization. I, along with most of the world, has experienced an incredible amount of emotion over the past four months – mourning for lives lost and missed time together, anxiety for our health and wellbeing, as well as all sorts of guilt - survivor guilt, white privilege guilt, guilt for not being able to do enough for those in need. Even the happy moments and the inspirational stories of courage and hope have taken a toll.
I am taking a break from emotion this week. I'm going cold turkey on watching and reading the news, happy and sad stories, and anything that might evoke a strong emotional response. I am grateful for the clarity and inspiration this emotional time has afforded me. I am more driven to do work that matters than ever before. Because we still have a long road ahead, I'm going to take an emotional breather.
If anything that I really need to know happens in the next week, please contact me. Otherwise, I’ll see you next week, hopefully as my best, recharged self.
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I am grateful for the clarity and inspiration this emotional time has afforded me. I am more driven to do work that matters than ever before. Because we still have a long road ahead, I'm going to take an emotional breather.
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