A thing I never thought I'd say: I'm making wine out of our weeds.
Tonight, the kids and I collected enough dandelion heads to make dandelion wine. I'm using a depression-era recipe, which seems only fitting, considering the times we're in.
And oh...what times they are.
I've been thinking a lot about these times. I imagine years from now, my kids will ask: "Mom, what was it like for you during the quarantine while you couldn't play concerts or work at your restaurant?"
To which I will reply: "I made you pick dandelions, and we turned them into alcohol."
And we'll all laugh and laugh.
But I got to thinking a bit more. As much as I love that I've written a lot of music, grown vegetables, finished house projects, and baked more banana bread than any person needs to, I'd like to get more out of this quarantine than a simple accomplishment of tasks. That's only one kind of work. I'd like to actually walk out of my home when this quarantine is over as a slightly different, better version of myself.
Don't get me wrong: I like who I am. I've become a relatively well-adjusted person through the years, just by having lived life. I've evolved as a result of my experiences and hardships.
But there are some parts of me I wish I could change today, right this moment. Namely, how quickly I become vulnerable and feel my efforts are futile when I'm insecure at work. Now, I haven't felt this way very much in quarantine, but I know I'll feel it again as soon as I'm out in the world, I'll feel that futile feeling again. So how could I change during this time without external pressures forcing me to change my ways?
It struck me today while picking dandelions: I'm going to have to change on my own. I'm going to need to elect to evolve, without practice or cause directly in my face. I'll need to make an internal game plan for how to respond when I feel vulnerable at the restaurant or playing a show. And I'll need to do it during these times in isolation.
I'm up for it.
Reader, the hardest kind of change to make is the one you don't need to make. Changing when you're "getting by" as is and evolving when things don't feel dire is counterintuitive. Still during the final three weeks of quarantine, I'm going to try my best to use this rare stretch of time to do a little self-work, some strategizing for how to emerge from this time with a little more depth of awareness and confidence. Like a butterfly emerging from a cocoon.
A beautiful bloated-on banana-bread-drunk-on-weed-wine butterfly, but a butterfly nonetheless.
See you next Monday. -Em