It’s easy these days to find things to be grateful for in my personal life. So much so, that it’s been a struggle to share my gratitude publicly over the last month or two as the daily onslaught of breaking news seems to ratchet up the level of terribleness with every sunrise. What right do I have to celebrate in the face of this?
It smells like a campfire outside. The sun is shining, but I don’t know that I will see it as the haze of the Woolsey Fire envelops Los Angeles. It’s Veteran’s Day weekend, and this nation’s president is derelict in his duties as commander-in-chief failing to honor properly those who serve or have served in our military. There was a mass shooting 41 miles from my house just a few short days ago. There have been so many mass shootings across this country this year that I’ve forgotten some.
After Tuesday night’s midterm election results were revealed, I began Wednesday morning with a meditation. I’ve been journaling more—once in the morning to set my intention for the day and at the end of the night to take an accounting—and in that process on that day, I committed to tapping out a bit from breaking news at least for the rest of the year. The world immediately pushed against this notion with crazy, but I’ve mostly held to it. Even if I haven’t yet replaced all that attention-seeking with books and maybe learning some new things,—my Candy Crush skills though are getting damn good—I have been more intentional with how I spend my time. I’m less informed, perhaps, minute-by-minute but not uninformed. I get my news in the morning from my favorite podcasts and then in the evening on the way home from my news curating apps and newsletters, and then I’m trying my best to go about my life.
And, this week, that’s what I’m grateful for: reclaiming my time.
And for being alive.
With a roof over my head.
Fewer people can say that today than last Sunday.
I don’t know what it’s all for, but I’m here.
Might as well dance.