The news cycle is unrelenting. I find myself getting lost in the endless loop of Twitter – the same heartbreaking news stories and pictures, with several hundred different outraged people attached to them. My heart breaks with every scroll through social media. My outrage at America’s willingness to vote a miscreant into office is renewed every time I get a news alert.
Occasionally, I make myself take a Twitter break. Sometimes for a whole weekend, other times just for an evening. It’s amazing how renewed I feel when I allow myself a moment of reprieve from the terror and anger. While on Twitter, I found an excellent blog post by Terri Windling that reminded me to focus on the things that bring me joy. That post inspired me to make a list of the things that are saving me right now. I know that many of my bookish friends are also feeling overwhelmed by everything happening in the world; I would imagine that the parts of our personalities that allow us to get lost in fictional worlds are what allow us to feel the pain of others so acutely. I hope that I can inspire you to look inward and identify the things in life that bring you hope.
I’ve written a lot about journaling and how much I love it! I continue to write my morning pages, but now I do it on my daily hobonichi pages. Typically, people write three pages a day, but I’m only doing one. Given how small the graphing lines are in my hobonichi, it still takes about half an hour to fill up a page, which I think is a pretty solid morning page practice!
While I don’t always write them in the morning, I make an effort to ensure that it’s the first creative thing that I work on every day. I might not have a moment to myself until noon or eight pm – but the second that I’m by myself and have an opportunity to work on something of my own, I’ve prioritized writing in my journal. It’s been so helpful to have that task pre-ordained; I don’t waste time trying to decide WHAT I’m going to do – I always know that I will journal first and then decide what to do next while journaling, IF I’m lucky enough to have more time!
I LOVE being able to check out library books for my Kindle. How brilliant are librarians to recognize what a valuable resource this is? Of course, libraries in general are rad, but virtual libraries are a godsend to me. I love being able to surf the overdrive site in the middle of the night and have books sent to my Kindle at any time and for free, regardless of my library’s hours. I wouldn’t read nearly as many books without having access to this website.
Which brings me to the next thing saving me…
I’ve debated writing an entire blog post devoted to my kindle, but have somehow resisted. I primarily read from the paperwhite, which I love. I used to be one of those people who said that they’d never read an electronic book and love the feel of real paper too much. Well, I still love the feel of real paper, but an e-reader has some real advantages. I love how portable this is and how I can throw it in my purse and just go. If there’s a book I want to read and am willing to pay for it, I can start reading automatically: no need to wait for it to be delivered or for me to drive to a bookstore. And it is perfect while nursing a baby: lightweight and compact, which makes it easy to hold. No need to manually turn pages, which is difficult when you’re holding a baby. Other children need your attention or the baby requires you to put your book down quickly? You don’t have to worry about losing your spot if you can’t get your bookmark out quickly or manage to put it in – the kindle holds your place! Truly, I don’t nurse without my kindle!
And now that it’s summer, I don’t nurse without my kindle or without…
While not the traditional tea used for making iced tea, we’ve been brewing Red Rose tea bags. It’s pretty good, but I wouldn’t offer it to any of my Texas friends or family! But Red Rose has become my go-to tea for chilly days and I’m loving that I can comfortably drink it year round.
And what is it about iced tea? It just instantly relaxes me. Maybe it makes me think of the lazy summer days without any worries of my childhood? Probably. But it’s so refreshing, just a tiny bit sweet, and an instant relaxation-inducer. Which is definitely something that I need lately!
How about you? How are you taking care of yourself during this turbulent time? What’s something you find yourself turning to time and again to practice self care? I’d love to get more ideas!