In France in the 70’s, TV was in black and white and owned by a government agency called ORTF (Office de Radiodiffusion Télévision Française). At that time, when there was a technical issue or a strike, the regular programing was interrupted, and the only thing we could watch was a short documentary about nature with insipid music, or worse, a fixed image with the ORTF logo on it. A total bummer – I hated the disruption of the program, and worse, the immobilization of the image. But after a few minutes, the upset was forgotten, and I would find a new game to play with my siblings. Children are resilient.
Last week, during our current period of confinement and immobilization, I watched a movie with my family on Tuesday night– which was very untypical of our weekly routine (we don’t watch movies during the week). After two days of sheltering in place, I was feeling the disruption of normalcy and the need to make myself and my family feel better. So, we watched Little Women. The movie brought back lots of memories, the book, the 70’s, the ORTF, my siblings… I was feeling very tender. My daughter was sewing – recycling an old dress into a skirt while watching the movie. I love that old-fashioned quality about her. The zipper of the old dress suddenly broke as the new skirt was almost finished. Mega bummer. She left the living room throwing the skirt on the floor and slammed the door. It felt like it was aimed at me and I cried. I cried, both for her lost effort, the likely cancellation of her upcoming graduation ceremony, the excruciating present moment, the uncertain future, my lost childhood, my youth in the 20st century, and the mess on my desk that I had neglected for the benefit of some good family time. My husband seemed empathetic to my upset as he looked up how to fix zippers on YouTube. That was before the electricity blackout in the neighborhood, followed by the fight I picked with him because the battery in my flashlight was dead! I played my famous tape -check link -(no battery needed for this one): “If something happened to you, I would be resourceless and unequipped!”. Our daughter interrupted my lamentation to say Good night! as if nothing had happened. Young people are resilient.
As for me, an aging middle-age woman, I decided that the easiest way to practice my skill of resiliency was to drink a glass of magnesium, and crash.
Question: How do you currently practice your skill of resiliency?