A person will be called to account on Judgment Day for everything permissible he could have enjoyed and did not. – Talmud
I am always a little frustrated by how long I go between making entries into this blog. Days, weeks, months pass by. I think of things that I want to say, to write about, and share. But all too often am held back because I feel those thoughts need to be deep, profound and somehow resonate with whomever may read this. I’ve begun to realize, though, that in approaching this blog in this manner, I have been missing the whole point of my even starting it.
I created this blog to share a journey – my journey – of moving from one home to creating another. As that journey got sticky and not nearly as glorious as I had expected to be, I retreated, pulled back, afraid to share so many of the things I was experiencing, to speak their truth. In so doing, though, I robbed myself of the ability to fully comprehend the nature and lessons of this journey and connect with others along the way.
Like so many, the current world events have rippled its impact across my life in ways that I could not have imagined weeks before. Prior to, I was set on realizing my goal of splitting my year equally in both the US and France. I was about to take a trip to the US to secure funding for a Foundation that I had co-founded a few months previously. I was interviewing for a position with a large technology company that would have possibly resulted in another move. And, I was about to celebrate the upcoming nuptials of a good friend.
And then the Universe stepped in and threw us all a curve ball. This curve ball forced me to come face to face with issues of control and questions of identity that have lingered below the surface for years. Although there has not been a day that has passed where my heart has broken a little bit for the lives that have been lost, I have also been grateful for the opportunity that this has afforded to finally begin speaking the truth – to family, friends, but, most importantly, myself – of not only pain but also beauty.
Throughout those conversations, I have realized that it’s the simple things that we all miss. A loving smile from a stranger, now covered up by a mask and hinted at with wrinkles around the eyes. A wink from a friend of a shared inside joke sent across a once crowded bar, now closed for the foreseeable future. A touch on the arm at uncontrolled laughter, now impossible in a time of social distancing.
We all miss the simplicity of connection – real connection. And though we currently do not have the French bisous or American hug to anchor us daily in connection, it is there – just in the intangible of this shared experience of transition. I have felt it daily and I hope whomever is reading this does too.
After months of empty streets and shuttered stores, the streets of France and the US have begun to open up again. But life is not going on as normal, even if appearances look otherwise. There is a new normal that is taking shape – both in our external world and internal beings.
As it continues to evolve, I am committing to myself to write and speak more – even if only a few words – both on this platform but, more importantly, face-to-face with others.
I am committing to not only recognizing all of the joy that is possible in even the most difficult of times – but to revel and share in it.
I am committing to giving myself the gift of connection – to listen more and fear less.