Have you found this time introspective? I've swung between having too much free time to NO free time (mainly the latter.) No social pressure at the beginning was actually rather nice! It gave us an excuse to look inward. It was pleasant to reflect, and to realise I feel grounded and OK. One of the blessings of being in your 30s! Teenage angst and my 20 year old ego have evaporated! Two things have arisen and then settled themselves for me:
It is within our nature, to expect the worst. To find fault and to sense danger. It is a good survival instinct. But, there are no wolves or lions hunting us anymore so we can sometimes turn this energy in on ourselves. We create wolves within the mind. In my twenties, my mentor and friend taught me a great deal about negative emotions. How they have ‘time’. Sadness tends to come from the past, and anxiety is from too much thought about the future. If you are present, you will be calm and/or happy. The isolation of lockdown has grounded me in this respect. A 2-year-old does tend to keep you ‘present’ too. :)
Failure - or a learning experience?
Try not to see mistakes as failure. If I were to see every mistake I make within the business as a failure, I would have packed it in a long time ago!
Mistakes are just that ‘to take in error’, a ‘misstep’, they are obstacles to overcome, they are not failures (there is no such thing as failure if you are learning.) I see my peers, often with far greater knowledge and experience, struggling with this. Describing ‘imposter syndrome’ and telling themselves they are ‘not good enough’ or ‘undeserving’. Something I can empathise with, but if I’m honest - it is something I have never felt deep down. I think this is largely due to good parenting - thank you Mum and Dad! Growing up, mistakes had consequences but there was never 'punishment'.
Our marketing manager, Serena, has diligently requested a blog post from me every week for at least three months. We’ve struggled to pick a topic. “Lockdown Yoga”, “Our COVID Story”, big issues like - “Cultural Appropriation in Yoga”, “Diversity in Yoga” and practical guides on “Equipment Cleaning.” It’s been a rollercoaster and I simply have not known where to start.
Well, that’s a lie. I have known exactly where I need to start but I have been putting it off! Lockdown started with the passing of my Grandma from coronavirus. There are two aspects to her passing which makes this unique and very heavy. 1) She was my Mother’s Mother, and the last of my grandparents to pass away. 2) She died from coronavirus.
- Matriarchy. It is perhaps something that only women can sense (correct me if I am wrong) in the same way my female friends feel a draw to the full moon. The matriarchy, the passing from womb to womb is very powerful. To feel the generations pass through you. To shift generations suddenly is unique. My mother is now the matriarch. My Grandma was an exceptionally tough person, she was not cuddly, but she was the ultimate protector of her family. She wanted to know we were all ‘sorted’ and on the path to a self-sufficient happy life. She was the mother of a group of people who are still far apart. It fills me with happiness, that in the weeks before her passing she found so much joy in pictures of Tom - that his face lit hers. Whenever he is looking supremely vibrant, I think of her.
- She passed from coronavirus. Thousands of people nationwide are reeling from this, but they are hidden. It is not due to death, death is natural. To have no ceremony, and to be separated from all family is, for want of a better word - bizarre. It is against nature. The process of grief cannot resolve. Death should be a celebration of life. And for the matriarch, exceptionally important to bring children and grandchildren together. To have all the pieces of that person together in one place is the ultimate celebration. I am healthily angry too. She was in a care home, and that generation has not been protected in the way it should. I think sometimes anger feels right, as long as it does not take you over and you know where to direct it.
If you were to paint the past six months, my Grandma’s passing would be the canvas followed by layer upon layer of paint, it is the background to so much. I think I would like to start a new painting - September equinox always feels like a new beginning to me.
For those of you who have experienced something similar, I know you are learning and growing so much from this time. I know you will find things to be grateful for. Death can make life brighter.
I’ve learned to take the time to be joyful. It is not selfish, if you are joyful you will spread joy. If you are miserable you can only share misery. I take joy in my work, in my customers, in my new team.
The next post will be more relevant to yoga products, female-led business, and the environment. I promise! I needed to clear my mind.
Here are the headlines:
- We have two new team members - Serena and Rebeca - they are AMAZING!
- Our bolsters, blankets, etc. (pretty much anything containing cotton) are back in stock and they are now made by our independently audited supplier - ensuring both environmental and social sustainability.
- We received our first shipment of paper wrapped goods, nearly all single-use plastic is phased out of the warehouse.
- Tom has started pre-school!
- A new Eko Sticky colour is arriving next week!
- New mats, mat bags, and more are all on the way…
Please accept my gratitude for supporting our business at this time.
The image used is my Grandma's favourite photo of Tom.