Friend, I hear you.
I can feel the shutter in your voice as you spiral in the floor of your closet feeling pressed down by all of the 'what ifs' and 'should I's'.
Your tears don't fall only for you but for the little people in your household you are so desperately afraid to lose should you make a wrong choice.
The 'I'd never forgive myself's' are swirling around you, dizzying you from all of the logistics and variables that come into play.
You're watching from your living room window as the neighbors return to work, come out to visit one another, and you're left explaining to your confused kids why you just aren't sure they should go ride bikes with everyone like they did two months ago.
Friend, I hear your sobs of confusion and chaos. I feel your chest heave up and down as you are unsure if you're the crazy one or if everyone else is for so flippantly returning to business as usual.
Here is what you need to know; of what you can be sure in such uncertain times:
1. Your feelings--no matter what they are--are valid. Do not let anyone make you feel crazy or 'less than'.
2. Everyone is handling this differently, but on what we can all agree is this: It is a global pandemic, not spilling your coffee on your white shirt before an interview. This is a major deal and it's okay to feel whatever you feel and for those feelings to change and evolve as information adapts.
3. Just because someone else (your neighbor, friend, coworker, family member) thinks we should just go back to business as usual doesn't mean they get to guilt you into changing how you feel or compromise what you're comfortable with to suit them. No ma'am. Get behind me, Karen!
4. You aren't alone. Much like parenting, no matter how 'put together' some people look on the outside or behind Instagram filters, their realities can be messy, too. We're all struggling to some extent and many of us are barely making it. You. Aren't. Alone.
So, if you are still shaking your head at the removal of stay-in-place orders, CDC guidelines for school reopenings, or your friend's post about how she almost died from not getting her roots and nails done for 60 days, just take a breath and keep it moving sister. If quarantine has taught us anything, it's that we are all crazy; our brand of crazy is just different.
Stand up for yourself.
Stand behind your true feelings.
Stand up for your kids.
And ask for help when you feel too overwhelmed to stand.
That's what we're all missing most, right?
The hug of a friend, the feeling that we aren't alone, the hand that helps us up when our knees are weak or we feel beat down?
Friend, whether it feels like it or not, opinions aside, we are all in this together.