It’s shaping up to be a beautiful, sunny day today. So there is that.

I have been noticing that part of me is constantly doing the work of shoring up reasons to keep going. I don’t want that to sound scary, like I’m bleakly suicidal and trying to come up with reasons to live: that’s not it. It’s more like … there is something inside of me that remains committed to finding life’s worthy moments, even (and maybe especially) when everything feels so incredibly dark and heavy.

I wanted to document that, acknowledge it outside of my own head in some way.

The other day I was on school pickup duty, driving to my spot in a full haze of whatever the opposite of mindfulness is. Lost in eighty billion very bad no-good thoughts, an entire minor-chord-in-place-of-major-chord melody of unhappy places for my mind to go. Everything is terrible and getting worse, how could we have ever consciously brought children into this world, I hate what’s happening to my _____ (turns out body self-hatred is like Jell-O: there’s always room).

I happened to look up at just the right time to see a car going by with a dog sticking its head out the passenger window. Its ears were flapping in the wind, mouth wide open in a giant deranged grin. This dog was so motherfucking stoked and it was completely infectious: the driver was smiling, I found myself smiling.

That’s all. I parked and did some doomscrolling and of course immediately lost that little burst of joy, but it was there. I noticed it.

This seems important. The dogs in windows, the luscious spring rhododendron blooms, the way I recently learned that some snails leave a little dotted slime-line instead of an unbroken one. Small things that bring delight and spark curiosity.

We are in such hard times, all of us. I hope you see something that makes you smile today.

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A semi-recent thing I do not enjoy is how my midsection has taken on an entirely new shape that involves, like, complex topography.

This doesn’t really feel like a “curvy” situation. In fact, when I hear the word curvy I instantly think of a certain type of body and that type is youthful, because up until a point you’ve got collagen and skin elasticity on your side and those are big juicy curves, girl! But as the ravages of time take their bodily toll, DANGEROUS CURVES AHEAD kind of changes to PARTIALLY-DEFLATED SKIN BALLOON WITH WEIRD NEW BULGES, POPULATION: YOU.

I am trying very hard to work on acceptance these days. I see a counselor, I listen to earnest soul-bolstering podcasts, I sit on a yoga mat every damn day and think about how to love this body I’m in because honestly what are the alternatives? Living in bitter hatred of my own self, day after day after day after day until I am DEAD?

I mean when you put it that way it seems completely insane to spend even one more second of my remaining life bemoaning the way my belly, somehow shaped like the capital letter B now, folds the lower part of the B over its old C-section scars like a tragic little flesh-apron. Or how my back looks both strong (yoga!) — and very much like a melted candle, with lumpy rolls that cascade down my sides. Or how my upper legs are now textured and jiggly enough that leggings really don’t cut it unless they’re thicker and form-fitting which of course makes them too uncomfortable to wear. Or how my breasts are just an entire fucking heavy-ass disaster that require monstrous bras in sizes and prices that are brand new to me.

It’s crazy, right? Crazy to spend so much energy, STILL, after all these years, after all the developments in the last who-even-knows, after all we’ve all been through. It feels crazy to care at all, never mind caring so much it sometimes feels like that’s all I can think about.

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