A day associated with flowers and protests in equal measure. I can do both. But really, my heart is not in the protest in this moment. It feels so small, when the needs are so huge and collective, and I'm not sure one group is more entitled than the next. If anything is a lesson of these times, it is that ALL humans are deserving and all have lost anywhere from something to everything in this pandemic.
(Although, I was on a group gathering with someone from Denmark who informed me her country has no more than normal death rates, and everyone has guaranteed health insurance and government support if they are not working ... For a moment, I wanted to throw a shoe at my computer screen, but instead, I chimed in dreamily how wonderful it is to know this exists in some universe, leadership and society based on public good).
I still have not received any of several pots of government assistance I'm "entitled" to, despite hours of trying to access, but honestly it feels a bit petty at this point. I understand systems are outdated and swamped, and folks are working around the clock to serve the 1 in 5 folks who've applied for unemployment in my state. And yet, to honor the survey I participated in, I am posting this little bit of advocacy. Many freelancers are actually in frontline jobs, whereas mine is about as back-line as you can get, so for that I am grateful, even if half of it has disappeared.
Acts of kindness feel extra poignant right now. I was able to shift my "victim" mentality of helplessness in the face of all around me, and along with it a bit of my days of depression, thanks to being offered work-trade for weekly vegetables at Organic Farm School. Just being around what I'm calling 'farmer mentality' snapped me out of it. "Oh, this crop loss, this bad patch of weather? It's a learning experience. Today, we retool and replant." It also helped me tremendously to communicate with a few live, off-Zoom people, even through masks at a distance, and be outdoors for a day of my week.
I also took advantage of a free 30-minute career counseling appointment with my former college and was shocked how much I could learn in a short time about how to reframe and honor my years of volunteer and life experience to create a narrative and collaboration springboard around what I want to do in my future, rather than a 25-year list of what I have done in the past in the pattern I'd like to change. Glad for the time now to work on refining this.
Next, I want to share a knitting-related essay that rocked my heart with how powerful the instinct is to want to comprehend something as powerful and incomprehensible as number of stars in the sky in a physical piece of knitting.
Grieving Our Collective Loss--One Stitch at a Time
And now, some May Day Flowers for you, in my weekly series of shelter in place moments relishing the steady stream of nature being its marvelous self. My 12-year-old goldfish makes an appearance, because every day I wake up and he/she is still here, I am amazed.
Staying close to the wealth of nature and making with my hands bring me greatest joy and comfort. You can find me on Instagram as @waterwomanknits, and on Ravelry as Waterwoman-Knits.