2 months ago
How I Find Joy in the Everyday
Life looks a lot different than I thought it would, but even when things feel difficult or lonely, I have found myself looking for simple joys in the everyday. We’ve faced what some would consider unimaginable, yet to others, we’re actually very lucky. I know that, too. Since we’re still fairly isolated, most days look and feel pretty similar, but there’s still a lot of happiness in our little family. Moments that once would have been expected that I now know are a gift. Here are some of the little things that bring me joy.
Special moments (and routines) with my girls
Sure, some mornings or bedtimes are hectic, but when Kate snuggles me and says “mama” on repeat, when we read a book she loves, or when Margot and I have our special morning snuggle in her bed after she wakes up, I can’t feel anything other than joy. I’ve been working on mindfulness – on really taking it all in. Creating routines and traditions with my girls – stories before bed, snuggles, etc, bring so much joy. Seeing them happy and feeling both loved and secure is the best feeling as a mom.
Watching my girls get excited about something
Trips to the zoo, dancing to Elmo songs, reading a favorite book, or playing a new game. I love watching their little eyes light up.
Enjoying a morning coffee (in a robe) in the sunroom while I work
I really enjoy starting my workday in PJs and a robe. There’s something about being cozy at home, and doing work I enjoy that feels especially rewarding.
Weekday lunch dates
These will be coming to an end soon since the weather is changing, but going to lunch on a weekday feels better than going out to dinner. It’s a time I “should be” working, but I’m out, usually with my husband, enjoying a day date. It feels like I’m cheating the system in a way? And that feels good.
Cleaning and organizing
I know this doesn’t do it for everyone, but I actually enjoy organizing. Just yesterday, I tackled our entry cabinet (again), and a few days ago, switched my summer clothes out for fall, and there’s something about things feeling clean and mindfully curated (only leaving behind the items that matter) that feels so good. I also really enjoy going to sleep when the house is tidy, and waking up to a clean home the next day.
Connecting with friends
These moments are pretty rare for me, and truthfully, I’ve been struggling with friendships this year. I’m still very close with some friends, but there are others I was close to that I haven’t spoken to in months. I get it – we all have our stuff, but to not even say hello…it’s been painful. I was hit by those losses, especially given everything the last year.
It always feels so good to connect since we’re still fairly isolated, so when I talk to the friends I’m still close to, it means a lot. Even just a hello or texting a friend feels good. I am also so grateful for the moms in my cancer mom’s group – we have become very close and are able to share what’s going on in our lives every week. It can also feel really good to chat with people I’ve come to know on instagram. As humans, we’re meant to connect, and when you go through something like what we’re going through during a pandemic, you’re naturally separated from others, so any time we can connect, even if it’s just texting or a call, is meaningful.
This was something I wouldn’t have put this much weight on, but after not getting manicures for a year, I will never take that for granted again. Whether it’s a manicure, massage, or even buying a new sweater for fall, it feels so good to do something for myself when I can.
Acts of kindness
Giving back, our fundraiser for childhood cancer, and even supporting small shops feels really good. Send a friendly text to someone going through a hard time. Buy a drink for the person behind you in the Starbucks drive-thru. Simple, kind gestures can go a long way.
Movement (and rest, too)
I really miss my studio workouts and don’t work out nearly as often as I used to, but I never regret getting on my bike or doing a bodyweight (toning) workout. Truthfully, I only worked out about 3x the last month until this week – I got 4 workouts in and feel so much better. Hoping I can remember this feeling and keep it up.
Doing the work I want to do, on my own terms
I understand that this is a unique experience, but this has been huge for me, and I understand what a privilege it is. There was such a shift during and after treatment – there was no going back to the way things were. No longer feeling chained to my computer or unable to do some of the things I want to do (midday workouts, design projects etc) feels so good. When Conor was working on our condo years ago, I wasn’t able to be involved because I was always working, so even getting to go to design meetings for our new project feels amazing. Creating content I enjoy creating and seeing others enjoy has been so rawarding.