I just picked up some sparkling wine and Hello Robin cookie dough from a makeshift market in Upper Queen Anne - two friends committed to helping local businesses out during the covid lockdown by pre-selling and arranging a socially distant pick up station outside one of their homes. They’ve been selling CURA candles and flowers from the Hmong Family farm, and this week they added cookies and wine for Mother’s Day. My guess is they’ve moved several thousand dollars through the local economy in a matter of days. Its remarkable, and they are not the only ones.
I see CURA friends and customers on IG every day promoting small businesses, helping to spread the word about what IS available and possible, putting in the time and effort to make their choices matter. Small business-owners have nimbly pivoted their business offerings to meet the boundaries of the times and the radically different needs of their customers. Local therapist Cristina Mullen decided to offer a donation-based meditation workshop through CURA and raised $2,000 for the Refugee Artisan Initiative. At least one CEO I know has forgone her own salary to keep her team at full time employment. And in so doing, these people are making it work, infusing hope and possibility into circumstances that once seemed impossible.
I think the time is right to acknowledge that despite this unprecedented challenge, we are - in fact - making it work. We’re doing it. Every day, sometimes painfully, angrily, and sadly, but we are. How many of you have done something in the past 8 weeks you never thought was possible?
Years ago, as a 20-something fashion model, I spoke at a Senate briefing on eating disorders as a public health crisis. As I was walking through the halls of the Hart Senate building, past the offices of so many well-know congresspersons, it occurred to me that the only difference between them and anyone else is that they made the choice to do it - they weren’t smarter or more capable than the average person, but they had the willingness to go for it. It was a powerful lesson. What I observe now, is that many of you are taking up that mantle, asking how can I help? How can I serve? What is possible, what CAN I do? And you’re doing it.
In March, right after the ‘stay safe, stay home’ order, I wrote that life as we knew it was over, and I’ve been reflecting a lot on what that means. What does life look like on the other side of this pandemic? What do we look like? I wept during meditation the other day because I had that deep sense of transformation you get from a bad break-up or loss. You know you are different, and although its not obvious how, its deeply felt. Today, it occurred to me that this grassroots movement to help out, to use our creativity and compassion to move mountains is a beautiful glimpse of what is possible moving forward. And its awesome. We've proven what we're capable of, let's take that into the future.
Have any questions or want to share what you've been up to? Write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I'd love to hear from you.
A fundraiser and evening of community care to support garment makers in Cambodia & India.
May 14th - 6 - 10PM PST / 8AM - 12PM ICT / 6:30AM - 10:30AM IST
Learn more here.