Back in February, I found myself a little overwhelmed by the beginning of the anniversaries. My memories were full of "the last time" pictures. The last time I hosted in person book club. The last time we went to Tuesday Trivia at the local brew pub. Even as I just typed "in person," I had to chuckle. That wasn't even a term we would have used a short time ago. And yet that chuckle contains so much grief. As the memories flood in, so do all the feelings. What a year it has been.
Each time I reflect on it, I am reminded of a roller coaster. I've even told some friends I like to refer to this as the Corona Coaster. There are highs and lows and twists and turns. You never really know what's coming. The long, slow climb up the hill as we waited in our homes. For those of us in ministry settings that initial focus was on getting to Easter. We just needed to connect with our people and find a way to make Easter meaningful. It was an all out sprint and we made it. Yet on the other side, nothing had really changed. It was a long ride down the other side as we realized this would be a marathon and not a sprint.
Now, here we are a year later. The ride had never let up. And we are tired. One of my clients called it "bone tired." That really resonated with me. We are running headlong into Zoom Fatigue, Compassion Fatigue, just plain running on empty. All when we are being confronted with incredible grief. I've heard it referred to as a tsunami of grief and that feels like it fits. How do we as caring professionals prepare for that as we deal with our own fatigue and grief? It's a lot.
I think it starts with naming it. We each need to make space to acknowledge what we've lost, to ponder the expectations we had, to reflect on the things we have learned. I encourage you to make space in your life to honor this experience. If you could talk to a young person a decade from now, what would you want them to know about this time? Grab a journal and spend some time reflecting. Get in touch with all the feelings of this time. If you prefer to do that reflecting with others, I encourage you to check out my workshop What Now? A Time to Reflect, Refresh, and Refocus. We'll be gathering live on April 30th or you can complete the workshop in your own time after that. Let me know if you have any questions.
But most importantly, don't let this time get past you without a pause to acknowledge the grief.
Because you are Worth It!