Workday Reading

The Edition: No. 153

Even in darkness it is possible to create light and encourage compassion. That it is possible to feel free inside a prison. That even in exile, friendship exists and can become an anchor. That one instant before dying, man is still immortal.  // Elie Wiesel

+ The calmest place on the Internet.

+ A cozy fleece top + the softest leggings + my favorite slippers = casual WFH.

+ The ‘Returnship’ for professionals with career gaps is gaining popularity.

+ Reusable, washable grocery bags.  And a reusable, washable produce bag.

+ A Google Chrome plug-in that lets you watch movies with loved ones far away.

+ A pretty gold headband for second-day hairstyles, or this Tahitian pearl hairpin.

+ How women and men are held to different standards at work.

+ Home spa day? A face/neck mask, a softening foot mask and a stress relieving neck wrap.

+ Practices for becoming more positive. (Yes, please.)

+ A relaxed white blazer + a floral sweater  + navy wide leg trousers = dressy WFH.

I don’t know where to begin.

There are so many emotions, so many worries, so many thoughts.  Everything is uncertain.

On Saturday, I was sitting with Kyle, playing a game of gin rummy, and in that rare moment of calm, it dawned on me that we were in self-quarantine to avoid a global pandemic.  All I could do was laugh.

How many CDC briefings did I attend, how many CRS reports did I read about pandemic preparedness back in my Capitol Hill days?  Dozens?  None of them mentioned gin rummy, Netflix, and grocery delivery.  But here we are.

I’m trying to use this time productively.  Cleaning out junk drawers, closets, etc.. Working on a creative project that keeps getting pushed back.  But it’s hard not to slip into a cycle of negative thoughts.

So maybe for just a minute, we should all take a minute to not think about what we know, and what we don’t know.

Instead, look at this Golden Retriever puppy, with only one ear, who looks like a unicorn.

Or listen to the sounds of the ocean.

Or read this funny story about some 14-year-olds who spent weeks planning an epic candy heist only to have hijinks ensue.

Or text a friend and set up a video chat for later, wine optional (or maybe required).

And if you’re lucky enough to still have grandparents and parents in your life, call them.  No texting.  They’re as worried about you, as you are about them.  Ask them to tell you about a time they got in trouble as a teenager, or what their favorite book was growing up, or which outfit was their favorite (my Nana had a pink-lemon printed short-short and cropped top set in the ’50s).

So much is out of our control.  But we can still find some joy, take care of each other, and plan for the future.  See you tomorrow.

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  1. Kirstin says:

    Great post, thank you!

    March 16, 2020/Reply
  2. Jennifer says:

    Just called my Gran in Ireland because I read this. I have called twice a week for years (and visit twice a year), but gave an extra call because of your post. Thanks for everything. Hope you are hanging in there. xo

    March 16, 2020/Reply
  3. Anonymous says:

    A great aunt told me stories yesterday on the phone about things she remembers from being a little girl during WWII. It was really nice.

    March 16, 2020/Reply
  4. Ral says:

    Thanks for posting the article about holding different (higher) standards for women at work – definitely hits home. I see it daily. And although helpful to mandate a minimum % of women in leadership/board roles, it is a double edged sword.

    March 16, 2020/Reply
    • Belle says:

      A male co-worker once told me that I had to “earn my place.” I was already quitting, but that sealed it.

      March 16, 2020/Reply
  5. Katie says:

    Love the calming links!

    March 16, 2020/Reply
  6. -Jen says:

    Thank you for this post! I know I need to step away from certain Internet sites, but I’m glad you are still posting.

    March 16, 2020/Reply