I sat in a meeting yesterday and felt it.
The stress was palpable.
As I asked everyone to take a minute to breathe in compassion for ourselves and others, it dawned on me that the unspoken stress I was feeling was all around me.
I could feel it in my family, at the college I spoke at recently, in the presentation I did for a fundraiser, in the Chapel community I serve at Vanderbilt.
I believe the stress is part of the price we are paying for living in pandemic times.
Maybe eighteen months ago when we shut down things were postponed and now we are having to do double-time.
Maybe the politicization of disease is wreaking havoc on our subconscious and its healing mechanisms.
Maybe the economic and health hit we all took in stride has caught up to us.
I could go on and on as I am sure you could go on and on. More than three-quarters of a million people in our country have died from Covid. And everyone's lives have changed.
If we don't take time to breathe, and give space for grief, stress and anxiety will fill its place.
So for my reflection to this small community of readers that I am so grateful to share time and space with:
Let's be brave.
Let us muster up the courage to name the stress and anxiety and move it aside for a minute.
Let the deeper feelings—whether loss, fear or grief—have their moment.
We have even learned to breathe through masks and that itself has taken a toll in many ways. We got this, but getting it has been costly.
Acknowledging the cost might be the most compassionate gift you give yourself, and others, today.
PEACE AND LOVE,