These are strange times. On the 26th February this year I wrote a blog post called ‘The illusion of certainty’ which talks about how none of us know what will happen in the next 10 days let alone the next 10 years and that my drive to control everything and create ‘security’ can be counter productive. When I wrote that, there was no global pandemic, Spain, Italy and France hadn’t essentially closed down and the US borders were still open.
Like many others I am sure, I am alternating between being terrified (Twitter and newspapers help with that), making dark jokes (‘I have been getting ready to self isolate for YEARS’), being cross with world leaders (I won’t identify which ones on here) and worrying about/checking in on friends and family. I am one of the lucky ones; I live in a remote area, on my own (well, with Rocco) and my ‘job’ currently (writing) is at home, but that doesn’t stop me a) catastophising on behalf of those I love and b) thinking about the future as a variety of dystopian scenarios.
The truth is, as I so presciently put it 2 weeks ago, no one knows what will happen and in my case, I would be better to leave the scenario planning to others more qualified and less prone to dark thinking than I am. If I am going to put my energy anywhere it’s on today. The next 12 hours are really all I have much control over (and then less than I think) so I am going to make the most of those and do everything I can to take care of myself and to care for those I care about.
As someone who got sober in AA, it is at times like these that 12 step groups/ philosophies/sayings come into their own. The Just For Today card, part of which I have quoted in the title, starts with: ‘Just for today I will try to live through this day only, and not tackle my whole life problem at once. I can do something for 12 hours that would appal me if I felt I had to keep it up for a lifetime’. Whether its handwashing 100 times a day, self isolating, eating store cupboard food instead of fresh food, not being able to see family, I can do that if I ‘keep life in the day’ (another AA mantra), and sometimes in the hour/minute. At the risk of descending into what a business journalist I was listening to this week called ‘yoga babble’ the only thing I can really be guided by right now is love and care for myself and others. Stay safe.