I have always loved the Fall. From simple pleasures, like the beautiful foliage in New England where I grew up, to annual events, like back to school and treasured holidays together with my family, Autumn has always felt like a time of new beginnings.
But this year feels different. The world is in triage. We are all coping with the new normal — a far cry from the new beginnings of years past. For me, it’s my twins missing out on 4th grade — the joy of learning alongside their best friends and the first year of real team sports. My friends with older kids are watching as they struggle with finances, lose jobs, or can’t go to college the way they hoped. It’s not what we wanted for them.
It’s not just the kids. We are struggling ourselves. My parents are a flight across the country away. I miss them. When we moved here, it felt like California was not really that far, but as the weeks turn into months, I ache for the nights we would stay up late together playing board games, drinking tea, and sharing countless laughs together. I worry about the long-term effects of missing out on the little things. Time is passing, and we are not living life as we planned.
And I know I am not alone in any of this. As women especially, we are torn between protecting the bodies and nurturing the hearts of those we love most every day. On top of all this, my body is changing. Sleepless nights have also become my new normal. My hair and skin (everywhere!) is dry. I spontaneously sweat even when I am not moving. I have always thought of myself as resilient, but the stresses of a pandemic layered on top of the changes of menopause are testing my limits.
So, what’s a woman to do?
It may seem suspiciously simple, but we already know the answer, ladies. Put your oxygen mask on first before assisting others. It’s more critical than ever to take care of ourselves. Take walks, read a book, workout, set a virtual coffee or wine date with your best friends. Self-care does not just happen. We need to make it happen. Find people who will help make it easier for you to carve out time to take care of you, so you can take care of them right back.
I joined Kindra because I believe that all women deserve support when it comes to taking care of ourselves, and I know that true confidence comes with embracing change. When women lift up other women, we can face any challenge the world throws at us… even this one.
So maybe Fall isn’t canceled. Fall, not unlike menopause, is a time of renewal and reflection — the perfect reminder that change is constant and life is precious. Let’s embrace this change together and take this opportunity to give ourselves and each other some love.
If you are lucky enough to see the leaves changing where you live, soak it up for me. I’ll take a long look at the Pacific Ocean, and do the same for you. You are not alone; you are Kindra.