I had a bad morning, but I don’t want to write about that. I don’t want my whole day defined by it. A week, a month, a year from now I don’t want to look back and remember only what went wrong.

There is still good to find and still good to do. The blue sky is always there.

The core of the issue is my recent struggle to wake up with my alarm, before the sun and the rest of the house. Waking with everyone else means sharing my time and space and I like having time to call my own and space I can do whatever I want however I want.

But these hours of peace are actually about so much more than being in silence or being alone. These hours are made of more than intangible time, they are physical, solid, and substantial too. I can feel them as space. I can touch them, hold them, and run my fingers and my mind through them.

I’m in love with the tranquility that the morning twilight brings before the day’s activities and expectations begin and being away from it for these past few weeks has left me guilt ridden and, in a way, lonely.

Without those hours there is no time in which I can find to connect deeply with myself, the one who knows and understands me best.

I lost someone I love very much yesterday. A woman who was greatly influential in the course of my life. A woman who, without that influence, I may not be here. Maybe not in this space specifically, and maybe not at all.

This woman, an only child who founded a family totalling in the several dozens at least in children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. I was her first grandchild, and she was not ashamed to call me her favorite. I acknowledge the unfairness of my status and I admit fully the joy this privilege brought me my entire life.

This woman showed me the purest love I have ever known. It was a love that had no expectation. A love as close to unconditional as this world has ever seen. I could do no wrong in her eyes and somehow that only made me want to try harder to be good, to be better, to just be me.

I wish everyone could have that kind of love in their lives. I wish everyone could have a vibrant, wild, kind, funny, and wise grandmother like mine. I wish I could have felt that kind of love for a bit longer myself.

Today is a new day! Today a weight left my chest, and a tension left my shoulders. I’m a little less afraid. I’m a little less angry. I’m a little less hopeless.

Today there is a new leader of the free world was sworn in and he is one whose values and vision for this country and its many and diverse peoples are closer to something that looks like progress, unity, care, and compassion.

I’ve been waiting four long years and to be honest, I had so little faith in my fellow compatriots that I still can’t believe it happened.

I don’t believe everything will be peace and perfection for the next four years. Neither Biden nor Harris were my top choices to take the reins and lead us through this time of recovery and resolution, but the more I have thought about it and the more I have considered strategy, I think the best candidates won in the end.

The office of the presidency should be one of centrism. The President, after all, must represent all Americans and not just the right Americans, the real Americans, the Americans who elected him and constantly threaten his political future.

Biden wasn’t the right choice for me, but I have a feeling he’s the right choice for us all.

“Somebody told a lie one day. They couched it in language. They made everything Black ugly and evil. Look in your dictionaries and see the synonyms of the word Black. It’s always something degrading and low and sinister. Look at the word White, it’s always something pure, high and clean. Well, I want to get the language right tonight.

I want to get the language so right that everyone here will cry out: ‘Yes, I’m Black, I’m proud of it. I’m Black and I’m beautiful!’”

These past couple of weeks have been hard on me. The work week was more than I could handle and on top of new medications and new side effects plus returning fatigue and recurrent pain, there was nothing left of me for me.

It was harder to adjust from my light quarantine work schedule to full work days. I hadn’t done much past noon, or past Wednesday to be honest, in months, and suddenly I was being asked to stay later and do it all. I’m proud of myself for making it through with minimal mistakes or complaints.

I’m working on getting through tasks I find difficult, undesirable, or uncomfortable by just doing them and getting them over with. The longer I stall and the louder I complain I only succeed in prolonging the pain and proving to be a loathsome person to work with. No, it’s better to put on a smile, put one foot in front of the other, and focus on a job done well and quickly.

I think I succeeded in that goal at least, and now that the long weekend away has arrived, I can let the anxieties and grievances of the past five days go. I definitely deserve some “me time” but sadly there is very little to carve out today. So, I am staking a claim to these few and fleeting minutes to catch up on notes and to-dos from the past week and through the next.

There will be more time tomorrow and the day after that and in the weeks to come my calendar should lighten and give breadth and breath to life outside of work and rest.

I’ve never had a Friday feel less like a Friday than this Friday did. In fact, this Friday felt more like a Monday than most Mondays do.

All employees returned to work at once for the first time since the beginning of November and it was…overwhelming. Of course everyone wants to know how you have been, how you spent your holidays, how is your family, and how you have been coping. It’s fine if you have one, or two, or even 10 coworkers, but to have 50 or more stop you for the same stories is exhausting.

Thankfully, there are quiet corners to retreat into and solo tasks that keep me busy and keep the others at bay.

I’m feeling a little down on myself. Looking back over my journal and planner, I can see I’ve failed to meet a lot of my goals this week. It’s been hard with my health in decline again and with work ramping up. I know I shouldn’t have expected to be perfect, but I did expect to do better. I spent too much time on my phone playing games and doomscrolling Twitter.

And how could I not? After the week we’ve had in this country, I think it’s probably entirely understandable that I struggled to feel motivated or focused on my goals or my work. Of course, when the world is falling apart, your willpower and willingness decline. Your priorities shift. Your needs shift.

I’m trying hard to remember that even without the dystopian images on the screen and the hopelessness creeping in, it is only the first week of the year and no one is expecting me to work so hard but me. I’m trying to remember that there is more to life than check marks and time blocks and even if I didn’t read or write as much as I wanted, I did laugh and I felt loved and maybe some weeks that’s more important than the work.