I’m not sleeping much these days. The up-side is I’m getting a ton of stuff done. Also, photographs of empty New York City streets, though eerie, have a certain grace to them. I only venture out every few days, but when I do, I’m struck by the same things: the exquisite beauty of New York City, the increasing number of people wearing face masks, the amount of space people are keeping between themselves and others, and the absence of noise.
Someone on social media posted an image like this one, with the caption (I’m paraphrasing) – Remember these? They’d be good to have right about now.
Every morning I go over the things I’m grateful for. It’s a routine at this point, something I’ve been doing for more years than I can count. Only now my list has increased exponentially. Things I once so took for granted as to not even make the list, are now at the top, among them are: electricity, food in our refrigerator, my husband’s breathing next to me during these early morning hours when I cannot sleep, but keep hoping I will be able to, the sound of sea gulls calling to each other, a friend texting or calling to check in, the little snoring noise our cat, Merlin makes when he’s curled up next to my head at night, knowing we have enough toilet paper for the next week, who knew that would ever make the list!? All the people in my life whom I love. The list is long. I’m so grateful.
Gratitude and fear are not easy companions. The fear may still be there, but its power is greatly diminished. The other day my husband and I were discussing fear and how insidious it is. He reminded me, “Courage isn’t the absence of fear, it’s going through it.” Here’s to courage, and noticing those thousands of moments of joy and beauty in every given day.
The Cherry Blossoms are in full bloom here in New York City, and they’ve parked a mobile morgue six blocks from where I live on 7th Avenue. Both are off-white.
Life has utterly changed in such a short time, it has left most of us reeling. And yet, we find ways to adapt. It is our resilience that makes us both admirable and complacent. I’m choosing to focus on the admirable right now. Last night as I was taping my most recent YouTube video, I could hear people shouting, clapping, banging pots and cheering from their windows, balconies and rooftops for those who are on the front lines, putting their lives and the well being of their families at risk so the rest of us might feel a bit calmer knowing if we or someone we love were to get sick a stranger would be there to help us, even save our lives when our spouse and children would be forbidden from even visiting us.
And my heart broke.
Each of us is doing our best to cope in myriad ways. My coping has been to adopt a manic work schedule. I was up past midnight two nights ago editing videos for Sue Spargo’s #InstaStitchWithSue project where she is featuring one 1″ wool applique circle and embellishing it with her beautiful threads and creative stitching for the next 90 days on Instagram. For those who might like to join in, she is also posting the instructions on her FaceBook page- Sue Spargo Folk-Art Quilts.
The day before she unveils the next circle, she is telling me which stitches she will be using so that I can shoot video stitch tutorials on my YouTube channel for left handed stitchers, but often for right handers as well, as many stitches are not hand dominant. I’ve made an #InstaStitchWithSue PlayList on my channel so that people who are following her project can easily find those videos. It makes me so happy to have a tiny role in her beautiful project.
My “To Do” list has never been so long, there aren’t enough hours in a day to accomplish even half the things I’m trying to do. Making the whole sleeping thing seem that much more a luxury or so I tell myself when I’m up at 3AM out in the living room working. And I know that this is my own peculiar way of coping with something so huge I cannot completely wrap my mind around it. I am not sleeping well something I’ve noticed others share, as we sometimes will acknowledge each other on social media with a little smile and wave of camaraderie.
There is such beauty to be found in our fellow humans who are trying to help others, who are trying to make this world and our lives a tiny bit more bearable. Their acts of kindness, generosity, and humor make those cherry blossoms all the more breathtaking.
Welcome to my store!
Please browse and look at our patterns available. We also offer Workshops! ~Ariane