How to Look Up When You’re Feeling Down

Image may contain: sky, outdoor and nature, possible text that says 'Do what you can, with what you have, where you are. Theodore Roosevelt "quotefanay'I’m kind of like that dog Dug from the movie Up.

Dug had a collar that translated his thoughts into speech. And he was easily distracted. Mostly by squirrels.

Same here. In the car. At home. At school. I could be in the middle of a sentence, get distracted and go off on a completely different topic never finishing the thought or conversation that was right in front of me.

Lately, though, there aren’t a lot of distractions. No visits with neighbors. No stores to walk through and not buy things. No restaurants or bars to people watch. Not even a walk on the beach.

No distractions.

I’m home. My husband, my dogs and myself. We are all home. And home hasn’t changed much in the past two weeks.

But I’m doing what I can with what I have where I am. I’ve gotten back to writing, something I love but let myself get distracted from with the busy-ness of life.

I’m finding new ways to improve my teaching through National Board Renewal and online professional development.

I’m spending more time with my husband, talking about important things. Planning for the future. Taking care of the stuff of life.

I’m checking in with people. Neighbors, friends, family, and colleagues.

I’m thinking about what I REALLY need on a day to day basis.

I’ve become more tuned into the unsung heroes of this country. The people who put themselves on the line every day. People who show up to work so the rest of us can eat and stay healthy.

Grocery store workers. Truck drivers. First responders. Health care professionals. Daycare workers. Parents. Teachers. Cafeteria workers. Bus drivers.

I’ve gained a new perspective on what the word “essential” means.

Because what I do have right now is a lot of time.

Time to see the beauty that surrounds me every day.

Time to spend talking to and with the people I love the most.

Time to think about where I am, where I want to be and how to get there.

Time to figure out how I can be of service when we can all be together again.

It’s funny. I haven’t gained any hours in my day. I still have the same 24 that everyone else does. What’s changed is that I don’t have the distractions that seemed to fill a lot of those 24 hours.

And for that, I truly grateful. You have the time. Do what you can with it where you are. Keep the squirrels at bay. You may be surprised at the results.