During these unprecedented times of global lockdown, I find myself being more human, feeling both stronger and more fragile, whilst doing both less and more at the same time.
The daily grind for me during the lockdown (now for over one month) is completely focused on family and home life, with new challenges such as home schooling and endless cooking/cleaning whilst getting to grips with being a Mother of two (ages 4 and 6 months). It feels intense to say the least but somehow a gift, to spend so much time together in this sort of cocoon.
I am missing inspiring conversations and real life catchups with extended family, teachers and friends. I am missing my work as a life coach and consultant, which I put on hold to focus my energy on the first 6 months of my baby's life at least and frankly will not be able to return to, until my older child is back in school. Schools are probably remaining shut until September, so that means more home-schooling challenges over the coming months too.
I am missing "The Culture Kitchen" an Arts & Culture podcast I was making with Kairen Kemp, that was picked up for radio broadcast by BBC Sussex and BBC Surrey. We were planning to return for series 2 around the Brighton Festival and Fringe, but of course that is now on hold for who knows how long.
I am feeling nostalgic for the postnatal support, delicious healthy food and bespoke natural remedies created by my super doula Gemma Harvey. I am missing the awesome babysitters who enabled me to get stuff done or to grab some much needed me-time.
But I am also so grateful for whatever this mysterious wormhole is that we are in during this strange time of global pandemic, where the whole world is being asked to stand still and being forced to go inwards literally and metaphorically. I feel cosy in my pod and with all it's daily challenges, enjoying getting to know each other better than ever before. For more than one month now, I have only left the house once a day to take a walk with my children and that walk becomes the highlight of the day. I notice every sound, colour and smell with acute awareness, it is presence in motion magnified by the contrast to the vast amounts of time spent in an enclosed space.
Each day begins with a declaration or thoughts of gratitude for my good health and for the good health of my loved ones, for the sunshine which has graced us almost every day and for the fridge full of fresh food along with everything else we need. This lockdown period has become a spiritual experience for me, involving a lot of prayer and being in a constant state of meditation. I cannot sit still to meditate in peace with two young kids alternating their cries for attention or food, so every moment has become a sort of mindfulness meditation or Sadhana; particularly the challenging ones.
Another highlight for me now, is in curating and recording inspiring conversations about wellbeing and creativity for a new podcast series entitled "TLC: The Light Conversations". These discussions symbolise connection during this global separation and I love that I can keep learning directly from global experts in their fields, whilst also offering it out into the world for whomever may enjoy or find it helpful to hear too. Thanks to the wonders of the internet and technology, I am able to record the interviews safely from home.
I wanted to contribute something positive to lift people's spirits and to document diverse inspiring voices, at this moment in history.
In 2014, I started filming a documentary about Healers and Shamans around the world, working specifically with "sound medicine".
In 2016, I founded and edited "Lightening Magazine" which featured interviews and personal stories of Healing and Alternative Medicine.
Many of the people who appeared in the documentary or who wrote stories for/were interviewed in the magazine, are taking part in the podcast series now.
There appears to be a logical progression happening too, from the documentary to the magazine to the podcast - all are about healing, wellbeing and creativity.
My first break as a writer was for NIGHT Magazine back in 2000 and I am proud of the fact that Candace Bushnell got her first break as a published writer with NIGHT Magazine too.
I had to reach out recently to it's founder (dear friend and a creative mentor to me) Anton Perich, to thank him for starting me on this incredible journey many years ago. From NIGHT to LIGHT.
Below are links for all of the above:
Take care, be well, stay safe.
I hope this time of uncertainty will pass swiftly and I look forward to the time we meet again in real life.