Stepping into the New Year, accepting things as they are, and practicing gratitude

Happy New Year, readers! Here’s hoping that this new year finds you healthy, loved, and supported and that 2022 will not be 2020…too.

I did not intend to take a long hiatus from my blog, but in mid-November, I had a baby, and in early December, my son’s daycare classroom closed for two weeks due to covid exposure (we tested negative); we celebrated (modestly) the birthdays of three grandparents, the holidays hit, and shortly after that all four of us got covid (we’re all now recovered and doing fine, thank you for asking). I kicked off 2022 feeling exhausted from still being in early postpartum, caring 24/7 for a newborn and a toddler, recovering from a respiratory illness, and not being able to receive childcare help from family. Looking back, though, I am grateful that I didn’t have to do it entirely alone — I have a wonderful husband who helped me (when he wasn’t sleeping off his illness) and family that dropped off some extra food. That, and the constant self-reminder that this wasn’t forever.. that the guilt I felt from leaving the tv on most of the day to occupy my toddler, the lack of fruits and veggies on the plates, the general lack of bathing for all of us — it was temporary. We were taking it one day at a time, accepting things as they were, and not asking more from ourselves.

Of course, my first light at the end of the tunnel…the first daycare promise of reprieve in 2022, was taken from me by our first snow of the season. The next day was a delayed opening that threatened to be another full day closing, and the next day I had a full day of daycare but was taken out by a migraine. And the next day… is today! Is the fourth time the charm?

Seriously, though, after airing my grievances, I want to pull myself back to a mindset of gratitude. I’m lucky I even have daycare as an option because so many people don’t. I’m fortunate to have a supportive partner in my husband because so many people don’t. I’m lucky that I have extended family close by, wanting to help and able to cook. I’m grateful that my family got through covid with just a few days each of feeling ill and tired. Honestly, I feel lucky that what we had was covid instead of something else (stick with me here) because 1. it gave plausible cause for my 6-week-old’s fever, sparing her some rather invasive testing and possibly unnecessary antibiotic treatments, and 2. our family of 4 now all has some natural immunity, that will hopefully carry us through the rest of this current omicron covid case surge. Given a choice (as though such a thing could ever be a choice), I wouldn’t have asked to expose our family to covid, but since we did get it, I must admit I’m grateful to have gotten through it and to have a grace period where it no longer feels as threatening. We’ll continue to practice the same precautions we always have (which did work well for us for almost two years of the pandemic), but my stress load feels a bit lighter.

So even though I would have liked to have already started planning my goals for 2022, this first quarter, January, and this week, it just wasn’t in the cards. Now that I feel like I’m back on my feet, I can take time to bring myself back up to speed.

One response to “Stepping into the New Year, accepting things as they are, and practicing gratitude”

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