The wisdom to know the difference

Whether you’re a worrier or not, you may be experiencing some anxiety lately. I know that I am. I thought I would address that today – not so much because I think I have the answers for how to deal with everything that’s going on, but because I am looking for ways to cope. So, if I’m the only one who reads this, then that’s ok because I need to write it out.

Social distancing is an easy thing to do. It’s just staying home and watching movies, right? That sounds really easy, but I think it’s actually pretty hard for us – and not just because we’re social creatures. I think that some of our anxiety and distress over this is because we are DOERS. When we’re under threat, we want to respond. Right now, we are under threat and there is nothing for us to act on. We have all this potential energy ready to deploy and it has nowhere to go, so it becomes anxiety.

This is a highly unscientific opinion, so don’t take my word for it, but it’s how I experience it. When things are uncertain, I want to do what it takes to make them certain; when there is a problem dogging me, I want to solve it. The COVID-19 problem and the failing economy are too big for us to solve, but the things we can do to help are just too small for us to feel like we have any control in the situation.

So how do we combat the “Black Dog” of anxiety and depression and stay optimistic, productive and useful through all of this? I think the answer lays in a prayer that has helped many people pull themselves out of pits much deeper than most of us can imagine:

Prayer for Serenity

God, grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time,
enjoying one moment at a time;
accepting hardship as a pathway to peace;
taking, as Jesus did,
this sinful world as it is,
not as I would have it;
trusting that You will make all things right
if I surrender to Your will;
so that I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with You forever in the next.


So, what do I have control over? I can get my kids up at the same time everyday and make sure they get dressed and ready as if they were going to school. I can do my workout. I can spend time in prayer. I can send text messages to my friends. I can make a plan for my day and my week. I can read difficult books. I can write down my thoughts. I can clean out my pantry cupboard. I can take stock of my finances. I can set small goals. As it turns out, I have a lot of control over a lot. In fact, I have control over most of the same things I had control over before COVID-19 changed our lives. Maybe I just need a little bit more wisdom in knowing what is mine to control and what is not.

Another thing I have control over is posting boudoir photos even though we can’t do any shoots right now. This session was done in the spring a couple of years ago, so I thought it a good one to show today. Best wishes to you all as we face the COVID-19 challenge together!

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