Hello out there. I’d knock, but, you probably wouldn’t or shouldn’t answer. The whole social distance thing is REAL! The enormity of COVID 19 (media/news coverage) must be intense. I wouldn’t know, I chose not to feed into my news feed/social media/feeding frenzy. Instead, from day ONE, I chose to explore. I chose nature and art and of course writing, and learning. As for the Pause… Leelee happily, joyfully, signed up for every Goddess/Warrior/Self Love/Workout/Yoga/Meditation/Shamanic practices/Mindfulness/Gratitude/teacher/ coach/mentor/therapist/All Guru’s! I willed them to me! & they graciously offered it up! For Free Yo! for MOI! I went in deep. I seriously couldn’t contain my excitement. I was estatic at the opportunity to learn. I was literally so elated about the “pause” and the opportunity to Educate and Explore myself, I was almost embarrassed to share my new spiritual awakening with my tribe. I did share with those I trust. I was also told NOT to hold this awakening “in”. Share it with people. Teach, comfort those around you. The Pause, I feel caused the universe to Shift. Adjust if you will. I feel deeply that I received deeper understanding of humanity and the air was instantly cleaner. My ears began buzzing (tinnitus) triple loud. The atmosphere is cleansing itself. In months, the Himilayan mountains were visible. Rome saw the stars clear and bright because the pollution and smog lifted. The earth is resting, cleansing itself of toxins. I like to think of this time as a Global renewal and a new awakening!
The world had to Stop-Pause-Stay Home. Everyone, Universally. That in itself is powerful. So, In a blink, we shut it DOWN. Boom. The world stopped spinning for the first time ever.
The chaotic, self absorbed, egotistical, money obsessed, stressed out, “wealthy” money makers. The ones that are owned and obsessed and ruled by earning money. I feel sorry for you. Many people equate money and/or success = happiness. I’m pretty sure I lost you, ummm, probably at Hello. That’s ok. I remind you, lovingly, you have NO control right now. None. Sorry. I think about a trader/ wall street guru, who is rolling their eyes about now… but, like, just here me out K? Perhaps, this Global Pause- jolted, catapulted us forward. Perhaps it enabled us ALL to make way for a new, cleaner, kinder planet and world. Maybe the Gods already knew how much pain and agony our sacred earth had been suffering? Crime, addiction, suicide, cancer, war, hate, bullying, pesticides, greed, indifference, a desensitized generation of entitled, self absorbed millennials that suddenly become overnight” influencers” or young billionaires are made instantly off of a puffy lip product! We lost our minds and our sense of calm. We never “paused”. Life was constantly in motion. Work, career, money ruled over Love, family and God. Yet, with the new mindfulness movement, secretly we all craved a more organic simple life. Living in the rat race takes its toll. It wasn’t that we all needed “more”. We have more than what we need! I just learned to appreciate, every raindrop, every moment. The question looming around: Did we need a Pandemic to cure our sick, self absorbed, ego driven, cruel world? Would this shift help those mentally suffering? Just by stopping- pausing, slowing down, stay home? Truly, surreal moment in history. That’s for sure. The COVID 19 virus is real. It spread super FAST from China and abroad. Today, presently, there is no cure or vaccine. We must open our eyes and then we must figure this out. We never prepared ourselves for Shelter in Place! Some may have prepared for the end of the world. Most of us, don’t. My brain kept thinking, this feels like a scene from Sandra Bullock’s, Bird Box in a weird way. Unchatered territory for sure! I mean, What does Pandemic mean anyway?? Is that like yet another new millennial term like( e.g.),errrr, Polar Vortex or something? I dunno, frankly, I, myself, felt a strong inner shift inside. A spiritual awakening happened the moment we were ordered told “Shelter in Place”. I already had mines! Girl, I dreamed about staying at home for years. Indulging oneself to mindfulness & self wellness and self=awareness. I seriously was totally prepared to hunker it on down! (cept TP).. but, that works itself out eventually right? Oh and BTW, I LOVE the TP commercials. 8 weeks later some marketing genius at Charmin got a light bulb moment! Let’s advertise our very much, needed, and out of stock, short supply Brand of TP and we are still like, “winning” during this pandemic! Shrugs, first of all, I am only permitted to buy the ahemm, ONE PLY, “gentle/safer for septic tanks” tissue! I literally am Jelli of people who buy Angel Soft for their cute butt. JELLI! Mine is like soft sandpaper, and you better LIKE it!
So, the days tick on. One by one. I avoid the news. I know what is happening. I read the daily numbers, every single day by town. I live in Suffolk County. It’s a red zone, hot spot. What started 10 weeks ago with a few or a dozen people testing positive. It is now in the THOUSANDS in many towns across Long Island. Every single day the numbers INCREASE. You may live remote or with 1 case in your town. That is not my situation currently. It is what it is. There is definately some panic in the world. But, Shouldn’t there be? I expected extremists and radicals to flip out. I don’t blame them. I mean, who has ever had to shut down a country? Stop millions from working, or earning a living? No one prepared for this shit! (Apparently 45 knew it was coming last year!) but, whatever. Still, we must adapt. I live in New York. I was prepared for New York City being a red zone. It is the potpourri melting pot of cultures, so, for me, it makes sense. I understand that many people who suffer from and with anxiety or depression or paranoia, now are at a higher risk. My therapist is working double since the pandemic. Most people admit they have increased their drinking to cope. Many began new medications to cope. Overdoses have increased quickly since the shut down. Doctors are stretched beyond their human limits. Suicide rates increase. People are suffering, child abuse, domestic violence, hunger, despair from all the financial stress. I think, all of those emotions and feelings are scary and concerning. I think many are struggling to figure it out. It’s ok. We are all in this together. This, my friends is as REAL as it will get. A Huge wake up call for humanity. I try and absorb the enormity of the situation. I vow to do my part. I began a fundraiser for many hungry kids here on Long Island. It is hard to ignore the reality. I work with high risk children in schools, all below poverty level. This is just an added burden for them and their families. I just try and reach out and help. They NEED it. I don’t need anything, I have all I could ever need. I can give to someone in need. I am proud to be able to help. Mostly, I hope many can return to work soon. Fact: You can’t live on Long Island without making BIG dollars. So yeah, I understand the desperation and rush to return to “normal”. But, seriously, what is normal now? Do you really believe we will just pick up where we stopped? Personally, I don’t. If we remember twenty years ago. The World Trade Center terrorist attack. We all changed. Our world was different. What I most remember is the outpouring of Love, support, compassion and unity. I remember proudly displaying our flag and everyone cared. Everyone shared. Everyone wept for one another. Today, I see everyone is a armchair expert. Everyone has their opinions, predictions, conspiracy theories. I just try and live my BEST self today. Why? Because that is all we have is today. We already learned that living through 9/11. The truth, the secret to living a beautiful life IS: We only have NOW. Nothing else is promised to us. Now, is all that truly matters.
I never listened to Trump. I mean, who can even tolerate watching and listening to his Extra Super Huge Ego! Certainly not during a time like now? We are well aware that our 45th president was/is a businessman/real estate mogul. He loves the all mighty American dollar right? He owns a bunch of hotels and casinos himself. He is a wealthy man. So, to order only Essential Business remain open was a very hard but absolutely SMART decision. Our city shut down for a few weeks after 9/11. The stock market closed for the first time in history. We understand a “pause”. What is the world showing us now? What lesson is it for each one of us to learn? We had China and Italy to model that for USA, right? eh? However, I do remember him quoting in early March, “we hope to be out of this by Easter” … enough said 45, enough said! Smacks tape over his mouth. I internally whisper, four 4 more years of this! Shivers. Anywayyyy… We all saw what happened in Wuhan and Italy. I cried at the mass grave sites. I believe we sadly learned from their error & their sad tragedy and human loss and sacrifice. I believe we are better equipped. We have the medical equipment necessary and staff and we have that thang – that – NY GRIT! We get through anything together. Crime is way down? That’s a miracle in itself. I started to see 100’s of the most amazing and heartfelt commercials pour out on national TV. Each one, brings tears to my eyes. LOVE and compassion. Recently, I really enjoy the TP ones! I watch and feel Pride for our essential workers. I read only the stories of Hope and Love in my local news. I share them with my family. Sparks of love. Moments of human kindness and compassion. I cry everyday reading them. I pray for each health worker in this country. You are brave and you are what is keeping America alive. GOD bless you all. Heroes emerge from tragedy. I call them Angels in scrubs. I am humbled and honored to acknowledge all of you. Angel bumps everywhere. I am thankful and grateful to each one of you. The Front Lines cover all workers. Everyone who gets up and braves this virus and goes to work everday, I salute you!
I was on board with social distancing. Gosh, I love my alone time SO MUCH! The work from home option became a reality. Closing the schools/churches/restaurants. It sometimes felt like a dream. Yet, I was sitting home watching this unfold. Fascinating. Unprecedented. Now, “Tele “learning is the new normal. Parents are all home schooling their kids! Oh Man! you are ROCK STARS, everyone’s showing their TRUE superpowers and its refreshing honestly. I know it has it struggles, especially with special needs children. I commend you. I think you are courageous, brave and resilient. I am teary just thinking about this “pause”. The upside…. You get to be with your kids 24/7. When will that EVER happen again??? They grow so fast. It’s true, you blink and they are graduating, off to college, married! Sieze the moments. Live and relish in Today. You have the power to bond and love and spend that “quality” time you always envied. Right Now. Today. Embrace it best you can. Lately, I have seen videos of a work from home Mommy, seeing her baby take their first steps. I have seen 1000 neighbors with strollers, dogs, kids in tow and smiles. They walk everyday now. They are a solid team. Mommy & Daddy and kiddies and puppies. I see lots of Daddies with their children, spending time that they never had the opportunity to spend. I think this we are all changing as humans. The universe is slowly showing us what truly matters! Mostly, I think this will bond and heal our families. It will solidify that together we can all recover. We can support each other as neighbors, friends and communites. We all are learning to adapt and to live differently. I stop and admire the afternoon strolls now. I love listening to children giggle. I stop and remember way back when and try and remember those precious moments together. I see people paying for someone’s groceries. Offering to shop for the elderly. I saw my Niece, come home and collapse in tears and totally traumatized. She is working in a nursing home, overworked with a short staff. Tough times for sure. I think about the working Mom and Dads working from home, AND homeschooling at the same time. You’re everything right now. Tele- therapy/medicine. Ahhhmazing! Then ALL colleges and campuses shut down. Mind blowing! No graduation class? The disappointment for the class of 2020. I feel them. Then, instantly, all students had to adjust to home learning. No ditching. So, the millennials have NO choice. No opting out. No protests! We are ALL in this shit together. Yet…amazingly, somehow, (for the most part) it is working. Slowly they had learned to adapt. Improvise, expand and be flexible. Drive by Birthday wishes and Screams are the norm now. I tear up and watch them all line up to support their friend/classmate. We adapt. We are learning. They are learning. Change enables us to see a different perspective. A pause allows us to look within ourselves. Self examination into our own minds and thoughts and coping abilities. It’s a true test of your “grit” or gratitude. You choose. You either fight it or you fall into it. I chose to fall and dig deep.
Now! I ask for a moment of silence. I would like to acknowledge and Thank the internet conferencing company called, ZOOM. This one conferencing company SAVED our world! Seriously, They are and continue to support and be the lifeline and connection for everyone, everyday! Globally, I applaud you. 100 year old grannies are zooming! I am proud!
We stayed in and home for one major reason: To Keep Americans alive. Right? Oh, yeah, by the way, This is NOT all about You today.. (boohoo). So… PUHLEASEeeee, I don’t care to hear your whining, entitled opinions about sheltering in place. You’re not the Pres, you are not a Scientist (Except my son in law is, lol). So, keep your “fuck it” theory to yourself. The mindset of self absorbed individuals that rant. We should all just GO OUT AND GET IT! and get it over with!… I am flawed at your ignorance and stupidity. I even wrote a snarky post about it. I am well aware that 80% of cases are considered “mild” or even Asymptomatic. Personally, I am Thankful for that. However, I’m fighting for the underdog, ya know, those other 20% of people fighting, sick, suffering and sadly dying from COVID-19 it’s scary and it’s real. So, please keep your theory to yourself. Go out, do you! your ego based, narrow minded mingling. Whine about the bars closed. Whine about your nails (a lot). Stay self absorbed and oblivious to helping someone else other than yourself. Nice knowing you, but, I am sick and embarrassed by your narcisstic, selfish, self absorbed rants. I don’t care about your hair or nails. I don’t. I do care about my community and pitching in. There is something to be said about doing your part. Staying positive, humble and kind. Oh, you bet your ass that I’m complying. I can’t risk getting sick and leaving my only daughter here alone in her 20’s. That is Not happening. I love HER that much, so Shut Up and pretend to be “smart”. Don’t ask to hang out. However, we CAN Zoom. Some families remain connected and close. They care about one another. They reach out. They facetime with their kids and Grandkids. They are constantly connected… There is a huge message in that, embrace it! It’s beautiful. It’s LOVE.. I envy and admire that tremendously. LOVE cures all.
Today, like… week 10 of self quarantining: I woke up today, in a warm bed. Slept in and listened to the rain and the Dove who sings each morning. I have delicious food to cook and eat. I can walk and take a deep breaths. I am blessed today. I feel protected/safe. Mostly, I felt gratitude. Enormous gratitude that is building inside. I call it inner peace. Total peace. It is well within my soul~.
Instantly and instinctively, My empathy and compassion kick in. How can I help? How can I be of service? How can I make a difference in someone’s life today? What part of me is needed to help heal our world? I already made a path. Volunteering lead me down a path. Support groups showed me the way to healing. I offer my services, I am a recovery coach. I am available to support people struggling. I Remember a few years ago? 3.5 years ago exactly. Lord knows, I was struggling. In deep pain and sadness. I was consumed with worry and fear. 3.5 years ago, I lost my son to an Opiod/Overdose. See, I’ve already met the darkness and the tragic sudden loss of my child. I am a survivor. I have already learned to adapt. I have the courage. I became a warrior for the causes that touch me. Honestly, what could be possibly be worse than living in fear for years? When I lived in fear, worry, anxiety it made me sick and weak. I had no control or ability to save him. That nearly drove me insane. So, you see, I wasted years and years in that powerless state of fear. I didn’t quite see it like that back then. My mission was to save my son. Tragically he didn’t recover, he died from it. I could not save him. The moment when you must face your biggest fear and then it happens, well, there is nothing left but to recover. That is a long, hard road. It is possible. I am here to stand in my recovery and move forward with my knowledge and truth. I truly don’t think I could ever fear much anymore. I had to figure out how to turn that around and make peace with all of it. I learned that you can’t save anyone. You can’t control addiction and you certainly can’t control the outcome. COVID-19 is like that. We are just learning about this virus and how to treat it and hopefully find a vaccine for it in the future. We are swimming in unchartered waters. We are racing for the “cure” if you will. I will do my part to support that. Today, my heart only worries and hurts for those who have lost their loved ones due to COVID 19 Virus. I do pray everyday for things to get better. I truly, deeply believe that this will all get better and so will we! Do your part today. Give with your whole heart. Human compassion, awareness, self love and nurturing your soul and building and growing in your faith. These things sustain us through the worst of times. I am a true testament to what a survivor is.
I spend my days, busy, content in doing a million little things. I became an artist overnight. Errr.. Self proclaimed! I redecorated every room. I cleaned all the dust bunnies and scrubbed and disinfected all the unseen corners. All we have is time. I chose to look at it today as a gift. Time. What has the pause showed me about myself? I am teachable. I have loved every webinar on self improvement, self care, self love. You discover beautiful things about yourself if you choose to go within. Meditation is big part of my sheltering in place routine. I do Yoga (online) and lots of different meditations. It’s a practice, so take 5 minutes and start there. I guarantee you see the benefits! Even just breathing for 5 minutes. Amazing, organic self love. Please try it! I recommend The mindful movement (On YOUTUBE). Sarah Raymond is one of my favorites. I listen to all her meditations. I think she has changed my life, in so many ways. <3. Gratitude! Some other things I enjoy: I pick a new recipe every couple days and create delicious, comforting meals. Cooking is my zen, always has been. I think a lot when I cook. I love writing. I have been writing a lot. I am documenting my experience and spiritual awakening of sorts in my book. I love to send cards, notes, beads to other Mom's grieving. I text my support group members with a hug every few days. I send packages out to my family to let them know I am thinking about them and missing them. A big part of my days are planning out projects. So much stuff to keep me busy and happy. My passion is decorating and my gardens are my total Joy. I love planting and making my backyard whimsical. I call it "my lil heaven"... and for me it is! I enjoy the fresh air, cool spring breezes, long days filled with sunshine. It's my healing energy. The dirt, the sunrays, the birds... its ALL good in my lil heaven. Gardening and creating renews me everyday. I've learned really creative ways to use up leftovers and waste nothing! I love repurposing household items into new art. I drive out to the ocean and pick the best smoothest rocks. I bring them home and clean them up and paint them. Inspirational sayings, words of encouragement and hope. I leave them all over town as little gifts and surprises for those that need a hug. Low and behold, I opened the local newspaper and everyone is painting rocks and spreading their support and love! Clearly, it's spreading. The "shift" is penetrating our earth. I sneak a package of seeds and a painted rock saying ~you are beautiful~ to my new neighbor who lost her husband last year. I donate to food banks, cook meals for sober homes and make care packages for nurses. I send my nephew home cooked meals to heat up and enjoy after his long shifts as an ambulance driver. Honestly... Hey? Isn't that what God did? Like, the last supper. Shared his bread and wine. Smart man. I try and follow him. I let him guide my heart and teach me to be a good woman, mother, wife, friend, human. I swear, I am grateful every single day. I worship the sunshine and every flower and seed sprouting. I have made friends with every neighborhood bird this spring. They sing with Joy everyday. It's comforting. I've learned to appreciate the little things. I open my heart and meditate each day in Gratitude. I feel the powerful energy of Love and Compassion. It's contagious and I hope you catch it too. I have time to sit and reflect on memories of the past. The life and love my parents made and gave for us. The sacrifices and unconditional love and support has been my salvation and rock through it all. I always feel lucky. Lucky to have been loved by two amazing people who taught me so much about life and about family. Their LOVE remains.... deep in my heart. My faith strengthens. My heart lifts. My healing continues and I remain humble. Oh, I never say... I'm bored. Ever. I encourage you to find your passion! Once you begin, your life will change for the better. Don't give up. Things will and are getting better, slowly. Be good to yourself and everyone you love. Tell your kids everyday, you love them and they matter. Be the change and involve your children in giving, in making a difference, in helping your neighbor and most important, being compassionate humans. What a gift! I had so much to say. I tend to shy away, make excuses. Today, I am taking a couple of hours and penning my thoughts and my gratitude in this blog. I decided to spend the morning remembering, honoring, sharing, caring, and bringing you the BEST LeeLee Moments...as I hear, feel and live them. Namaste, Stay Healthy and Stay Humble & Please Stay Home <3 ~leelee