This morning was gray.

Which is absolutely nothing new for living in the Pacific Northwest. Even during the first week of July, and that is wrong, but I opened a lot of the blinds as far as I could so I could shake that cave feeling from not having enough light. It was still dreary. I mtreestreetoved through my day getting things done and taking notes to get other things done. Then, around 6:30pm cracks started to form in the sky to show the blue that was just beyond our cloud layer the whole time. I bolted outside under the guise of picking up a package but it was really to assure myself that Summer was really here because I needed something to be at least normal in theory in these Covid streets.

Dear Class of 2020,

gcapsI have had the honor of seeing so many of you navigate your way through celebrations of your degrees and diplomas. I admire the fact that you are moving through this pandemic with kindness toward those who share your community with you while you are still making responsible choices for yourselves. I hope your tenacity will continue to be a driving force in your lives and in all of the lives you touch.

I wish you the best of everything in the days, weeks, months and years ahead. Here are a few things I’d like to share that have helped me in the years since my high school and college graduations. Learn from the people you agree with and learn from the people you don’t agree with. Some people are in your life for a reason, some for a season and a few for a lifetime. Embrace them, but when the time comes, let them go without bitterness. Treat people with kindness and respect whenever you can because you have no idea what they are going through. That includes yourself. Work hard. Play hard.

All the best,
TJ

Rain.

rainrainWhen it rains, it pours. My life has been a deluge for the past year and a half. I am sliding through the mud of what used to be my everyday existence. Even with rubber boots some days I completely fall on my behind and all I can do is get where I need to go, throw the muddy clothes in the washer, hop in the shower and try it again. There are some days like today when I am thankful for people who remind me that I am not alone, and I am encouraged to continue this process which feels like a chrysalis, breaking me down and building me up all at the same time.