Hello 2021! Please be kind to us.

On Tuesday of last week – in other words, the day before the attempted coup on our federal legislature and national election process – I drove around my town to do a few errands.

It was a new year; I had a bunch of books on knitting socks that had just arrived for me at the library; I had the bandwidth and hand strength to knit something as ambitious as a pair of socks.

I had lots of hope for the future.

Driving to our library, I passed the senior center in my town and saw the following words on their sign:
“Hello 2021! Please be kind to us.”

I smiled and drove on, with hope in my heart.

The town I live in has done an absolutely wonderful job in helping its citizens through the pandemic.

Early on, the town started doing emergency meetings on our local cable access, and in YouTube (more recently they’ve taken these up in Facebook), sharing about everything from Covid case numbers to changes with schools to what’s happening with town meeting and other local events.

They’ve brought on guests, managers of local supermarkets, the public health nurse for our town…

they even brought me on to help parents manage things like helping kids with mask wearing, and how to keep going in all of this. (Click here to view the meeting I was on.)

They even shared a special email address for us residents, so that we could write and ask our questions, get them answered in real time.

These meetings took place five days a week throughout April, May, and June 2020.

They helped me feel informed and safe, and truly part of the community of caring people.

These community feelings were all the more important given that we live in a part of New England that has been called “the deep south of the north” and “the Confederacy of the north.”

Some days in the pandemic have been so filled with fear and worry because of the angry and intolerant energy surrounding my family.

Folks coming up to my children and telling them “you don’t have to wear those masks you know.”

Signs expressing unkind, racist thoughts.

And more.
It’s been really hard to stay positive some days!

I’ve been so grateful to the leaders in our town for combating that energy, with the meetings, with library curbside pickup.

And with small messages, like last Tuesday’s aforementioned, adorable sign at the Senior Center welcoming us into the new year and asking that 2021 “please be kind to us.”

Then, Wednesday happened.

The fear and worry felt like it was exploding out of my area, and covering the whole country.

In those moments when I was worried about my family, I was also worried for you.

I wondered, how are you feeling?
How could I serve you, and help you feel better?

The answer I came up with: if 2021 is going to “be kind to us,” we have to be kind to each other.

On Thursday morning I recorded a bonus podcast episode, which you can find by clicking here.

In it I share the one thing your kids need most from you right now – spoiler alert, it’s remaining calm! – as well as tons of resources to help you accomplish that.

I hope it helps.

Let’s make 2021 kind to us, by being kind to each other.
After all, the connections we share are what will see us through.

Cheers!
Karen

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