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Okay, here’s where I am as a mom right now.
After not even having an exposure in the last two years, I got Omicron despite being vaccinated and boosted, not leaving California, not seeing family for the holidays, and not going to a single holiday party. I don’t even go to grocery stores.
If I got it, a sh*t ton of folks did.
Was I sick? Not really. Thanks, science! But a positive is a positive and it really disrupts life for a lot of people for weeks. That feels terrible.
The data shows that mild or not, there are more COVID cases in Palm Springs right now than any time in the past two years. And we’re weeks away from even the most optimistic estimates of when this thing peaks.
My New Year’s resolutions have taken a dramatic turn this year.
There was a time when they were heavily about being a better mom. Then that all stopped because it became clear I was doing enough as a mom.
Then there was a time they were very about hitting business milestones. And then that stopped because it was clear that revenue targets and fundraising were far less in my control than I hoped.
There used to be a lot about eating habits and workout habits.
In general, there were a lot of “shoulds.”
I grew up in the evangelical South. You don’t have to know much about me to know why I fled that life.
But there’s one thing I heard in my Church of God Sunday school that stuck with me. That even fueled me. That I came back to again and again when the gaslighting of the patriarchy tried to weave its tentacles around me. That I shared with our “How to Be Self-Promotional” course and one woman told me it was the single thing that had stuck with her, nagged her, and changed her behavior as a result.
During my wellness retreat, I went to a group tarot card reading, and it wasn’t that insightful, to be honest. But a bunch of cards were coming up around my inner child.
I’ve been thinking about her a lot lately. I found a sweet picture of myself when I went back to Memphis recently to help get my parents’ house ready to sell. I posted on Instagram that we all need to spend some time mothering our poor inner kids. There is so much I would tell her, and I would just HUG her if I could go back in time. I felt like I needed to go back in time and protect her.
Enough about my COVID-19 situation. Today I want to talk about some of the profound positive things that happened while I was away for a week.
One insight: It is NOT NORMAL to go 11 years without a vacation. Silicon Valley has tried to normalize that, but it’s not.
Another insight: What I found luxurious.
Sure, the massages and facials were great. But what I really loved was going on daily 5am six-mile hikes and eating orange slices at the top of a mountain. The freedom to move in so many different ways for the joy of it, with no clock ticking or anything else I needed to be doing. I did pilates, yoga, spinning, tai chi, dance classes, weight training, rowing…I even learned to swim!
Here’s one of the many annoying things about my COVID positive: I took the test right before I thought we were hitting the road to drive back to San Francisco for the last week of winter break.
I had just had the idea we should go, because our hotel (we are living there while our Palm Springs home is under construction) was rammed with folks not wearing masks, and it didn’t feel safe. At least we could hole up at the other house and I could ACTUALLY COOK IN A KITCHEN. I asked my kids if they wanted to go and they were ELATED. We talked about baking and cooking and snuggling and watching movies and doing puzzles and playing board games. It was going to be incredible.
Hi! I am back!! And I have so much to tell you that will take more than a few newsletters to unpack. It’s full of the duality that is our lives now.
- I had an incredible, perspective-changing, healing, recharging eight days at a health retreat where I got so many profound insights and action plans, and I left feeling totally reset in so many ways.
- I also got COVID.
Yes, the irony: I go to a health retreat and get COVID.
And yes, that will teach me to take my first work-free vacation in 11+ years.
Ha ha ha.
But terrible jokes aside, it’s an interesting reality to sit with.
The only real “lesson” is how insidious this variant is. The retreat was at half capacity as a precaution. It’s totally isolated on hundreds of acres. It was close enough that I didn’t need to take a plane. Everyone was fully vaccinated and boosted. Everyone had to test negative on the spot before getting in. The staff is regularly tested, vaccinated, and wears masks. I wore masks for indoor treatments and classes. We were outside most of the time.
Newsletter editor Lily here.
I curated an article below that talks about the concept of “Dead Week,” aka this very strange week we have here in the States between Christmas and New Year’s where no one really knows what to do.
It’s probably the only time all year in American culture where there’s an expectation that many people aren’t working. Of course, the reality is much more complicated, and plenty of folks don’t have the option to take off any time right now. And yet, that general notion still lingers.
Newsletter editor Lily here.
Welcome to the weird week between Christmas and New Year’s!
I’m about four months behind, but I finally had the chance to watch Only Murders in the Building on Hulu over the last couple of days, and I was totally hooked.
For those who haven’t heard of it, the murder mystery comedy series is set at an old apartment building called the Arconia in New York City, where three residents who are true crime aficionados (played by Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez) start their own podcast after one of their neighbors is killed.
Newsletter editor Lily here.
We’re only a few days out from Christmas, and our Daily Dose newsletter will be taking a little break for the rest of this week!
You’ll hear from us for a few days early next week, and then we’re spending more time with family and friends heading into 2022.
It’s another very weird and somber holiday season in America and around the world, as so many of us are dealing with uncertainty, loss, and every other emotion. I hope that during this time, however, you’re able to find those small pockets of joy and relaxation.