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book daily practice meditation these three things writing writing meditation

This time counts too. I first learned this as a psychotherapist working with adolescents in acute crisis. When they were depressed and unable to move, on the verge of a diagnosis that they would have to manage for life, or within the 4 walls of a psychiatric hospital for a week, the clock never stopped ticking. One of the things my patients would often talk about is what to do with this time. Many turned to art, writing, a form of self-expression they had never tried before. Most became angry. It would be weird if they weren't. Being stuck and negotiating with time is hard enough for adults. When you are a teen, it's a bitter pill to swallow.

I would learn this struggle with time personally, years later when we were trying to get pregnant. I had become so consumed with loss, I could barely move. Life was one foot in front of the other for me for the better part of two years. In ways that I can only understand now, that time did matter, as it shaped so much of who I am now. And how I parent.

I started this project and book #thesethreethings exactly 1,333 days ago. It began on a July morning, at the suggestion of a lifelong friend, who coincidently reached out last night to remind me that this time right now, be it a few weeks, or months, is also time that counts. In July of 2016, I was stuck. I wanted to be in the past, or fast forward to the present. I was unsettled. Agitated, and unable to grapple with feeling unhappy in the present. I was angry. So, I started this project. Writing three things I've learned each day, pairing the learnings with an original photograph and sharing them here. I knew that starting the day curious and focusing on something I love - learning, would lead me somewhere. And it has.
This project has become the way I live my life. End my day, and see the world. The biggest change is that since I began this project, I have never started a day with wanting to be closed off, unreceptive, or shut down. I am open. Palms up. Receiving. And that's hard sometimes. I've had to be really honest with my emotions. Especially grief. It's weird. And cannot hide forever. And that's a good thing.

I'm sharing all this in the hopes that we can all look at these coming weeks as time that counts. People will be born, fall in love, learn to sing, and get to know each other in ways we never imagined. There will be families who are all together for the very first time, others who will discover glory in nature, art, math, and simply breathing. Countless hours with our plants and pets. Music. Writing. Art. Anger. Happiness. Joy. And grief.

I'll be here doing this project, learning each day, and helping to encourage those of you who would like to make this time count. You are invited to do so here in the comments, in your own copy of These Three Things, quietly to yourself under a pillow fort, or screaming into the wind. They all count. And so do you.

Reach out. DM, email, get in touch with questions, ideas, favorite quotes, recipes, all the things. I'm here. And open.

What did you learn today? Join me by using the #thesethreethings and commenting below with your own These Three Things. I want to hear what you are learning, laughing about, and living through.

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