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January 23, 2021

How the Pandemic Helped me Find What Matters Most.

It’s Saturday night, and my dear husband has volunteered to put the kids to bed so I can take a bath and relax.

It’s been a week. A month. A year. It was just 2020, after all.

Looking back to early March of last year, our lives were so carefree—who knew what the year was about to bestow upon us?

From my perch in New Jersey, things were looking good. My husband and I both have good jobs, two healthy little boys, and a fair amount of free time. Then lockdown. And work continues. An older parent lives in a foreign country and I desperately arrange for his safe arrival back to the United States. My house, to be exact.

Uncertainty, and grocery store lines with sold out food and pantry items. My kids eat a lot of beans so what happens if my fussy toddler doesn’t get his usual white beans as a side for dinner? Dinnertime is a nightmare at best for many parents, and the likes and dislikes of a toddler can force a family into full submission on a good day. I joke, but you hear me out there moms, only the red cup, not the blue cup! 

Fear, doubt, and then political unrest. Suddenly, our small world starts to look a little scary. And just like that, beans and red cups matter a bit less. 

I continue to work my day job and have a wonderful(ish), screen-free summer with the kids outdoors without many playdates. Life appears normal to them and that’s what matters, right? But then it kicks in: what am I accomplishing to help others in my day job? What am I doing to contribute to others’ happiness and wellness? 

I meditate on it. I observe my kids and use mindfulness techniques I’ve practiced for years (but had set aside) to get every moment out of each day, realizing that, at any moment, the world will open up again and I’ll be back to the office each day.

I am usually a “get it done girl” and avid cook, baker, homemade everything maker. I go into overdrive baking, using two full 50 pound bags of flour in four months—sourdough loaf anyone? Then it hits me: use this energy to really do something. 

Let’s put it to good use. Look at what drives me and make it work in my favor.

I started an online fitness company using my small amount of business knowledge and a sh*t ton of Google.

I am and always have been a fitness nerd, and was a personal trainer, but left the field for more full-time work. So I do intense research online and check out the people I am already paying for online workouts. I can do it but with a purpose. Mindful You Fitness idea came to me on a Wednesday morning while driving my dad to physical therapy. Back to the house I rushed, full of inspiration, and by Friday, I was a proud LLC owner. 

Fast forward three months, and I am recertified, I have tons of workouts written and filmed, I have the best online platform known to woman, and app, and a great social media presence. My workouts include mindful movement with strength training and each workout is accompanied by a quick meditation.

This is what I’ve been searching for—a way to help moms who want to be healthy for their kids but are stuck homeschooling, trying to keep it all together. The parent who can’t afford the time or money for a gym membership but who just wants 30 minutes to work on herself. If I can provide just one iota of calm for one of those moms, I’ve done what I came for.

I flip the switch and start taking clients and I’ve never been more inspired by others. People show up bedraggled, beaten down, and weathered. Women show up (virtually) ready to take on the world anyway. It’s amazing, and I’m so proud to be part of their journey.

It took COVID lockdown and the upside down world to show me what I was here to do—and I made it happen. I didn’t will it; I took meaningful steps daily to make it happen. Without a pandemic, I would not have found this deeper meaning to my every day.

And you’ll be happy to know that it turns out toddlers grow out of their white bean fetish and learn to like the blue cup. 

Wish me luck out there! 

~

 

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Cee McDermott  |  Contribution: 870

author: Cee McDermott

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