It’s a mad week around here, folks. Full of exciting things: a wonderful folk concert, a book event, an evening of pizza and wine and Downton Abbey with friends. And full of crazy-making things: too many meetings, a two-day work conference, a 48-hour deadline on a work project made necessary by said conference. Gloomy and frustrating winter weather – no single-digit temps this week, but we have had rain, snow, slush, high winds and grey skies. Many of the things that preserve my sanity – routine, sunshine, spare time, home-cooked meals – are in short supply at the moment.
I am wishing (again) that I could fly to some exotic location, explore a new city or revisit a beloved one, leave the mundane tasks and damp, chill weather far behind. I forget, every year, what a long grey slog the Northeastern winter can be. (I think most people must, or they wouldn’t go on living here.)
But tonight, I came home and took off my boots and slid my feet into cozy slippers. I took a few deep breaths and made a pot of Tuscan sausage soup, and washed a sinkful of dishes. I ate far too many Dove chocolates, and a steaming cup of decaf vanilla black tea sits at my elbow as I write. And there are yellow tulips on my dining room table.
I am trying not to be discouraged, to remember the words of Shakespeare, taken to heart by a certain Emily Webster: “Muster your wits; stand in your own defense.” And the words of Marcus Aurelius, which I discovered via Father Tim Kavanagh: “The first rule is to keep an untroubled spirit. The second is to look things in the face and know them for what they are.”
The chaos will still be waiting for me tomorrow. But like Emily, and Mary Tyler Moore, and the rest of my heroines, I’m determined to make it after all.