As an air sign, during times of disquietudes, I really need to keep myself grounded. It’s important for me to develop some personal grounding practices on a daily basis.
I realized that if I allow myself to fall into the rabbit hole of scrolling through various news outlets and reading commentaries about the current situation, I could get easily carried away in the ‘fight-or-flight’ response.
However, at times like these, I find it necessary to have a ‘faith-and-flow’ attitude towards life. To keep believing in humans and their capacity for loving and showing kindness towards one another (and towards other living beings!)—and to keep flowing with the changes instead of resisting.
Surely, it’s easier said than done. And it’s exactly why I spend more time these days on grounding myself: from meditating, cleaning my space, folding my clothes, brewing rosella tea, doing qi gong and yoga exercise, listening to calming music (love Tibetan singing bowls), gazing at the swaying trees—following their movements, and of course, journaling.
When my mind is foggy and heavy, I pour everything down on paper to have some necessary release. It feels so natural and familiar to me, like seeing an old friend, like coming home to a place inside of me that has always been there all along.
A few days ago, a friend of my husband dropped by with his motorbike to deliver his homemade ragù bolognese; before returning to his semi-isolation. Having to spend more time at home, he decided to stock up his fridge and cook more meals. He’s good with pasta sauce (and his carbonara is amazing) and I still remembered the day (before the pandemic) when he threw a successful gnocco fritto party.
In the evening, my husband and I boiled some pasta and heated the ragù. Sitting cross-legged on the floor of our bedroom, we ate our spaghetti bolognese with gratefulness. It was so delicious!
Suddenly, it dawned on me that maybe this was what it means to be present as who you are; even during times of crisis.
I could still recall the day when the pandemic started to escalate here in Indonesia, and I sensed a wave of worries and anxieties flushed over me from all the circulating news and rumors on the Internet. Then I stumbled upon a friend’s Instagram account, where she posted herself doing the dancing challenge to a cheerful song in TikTok.
I watched her dancing cheerfully; smiling and making funny expressions. She was having fun, I could tell. I could even feel her energy filling me with joy, and as she swung her arms and jumped and jerked, I noticed a smile on my face, and slowly, as I was feeling more pumped and excited, I finally felt like I came back to my senses. The feeling of hope started to fill me in, and I went to the shower, ready to start the day.
My meditation teacher started to provide more online guided meditation classes; from once a day to 4 times a day now. Another friend sent me stupid jokes and funny pictures from all over the Internet; another one kept updating me and her Instagram followers on various acts of kindness we can do during these tough times and which social initiatives we could support and send donations to. The sister-in-law of the Ibu who owns the house where we live, sent fresh towels for us the other day, and she folded the towels into a cute little elephant, with eyes made of leaves cut into small circles and a frangipani flower stuck on its trunk.
So, this is what I see: I see people trying to do what they can and lift each other’s up by being even more present as themselves, as who they are, in whatever they do.
Those who love to dance, dance. Those who can sing from the balcony, sing. Those who love to cook, cook. Those who fall in love, fall in love. Those who love to decorate, decorate. Those who love to get directly involved in the field, get involved. Those who love to donate to charities and social initiatives, donate. Those who love life, give life.
The underlying idea, I believe, is knowing that we can be present in these challenging times as who we are, honestly. To give as who we are and to give from Love. To know that there’s no act of Love that is too small, too unsubstantial, or too unimportant, even when it can seem small, unsubstantial, or unimportant.
So, today, take good care of yourself, the people you love.
When you can, be kind and be present as who you are.
Share the Love with the people around you.
I always think of Love as a wave of energy that touches others and creates a ripple that spread out further and further. We’ll never know where it began: how many lives it has touched, how many souls it has lifted up, how much hope it has infused in someone’s desperate times.
Let’s create those ripples.