Last weekend, I travelled with Nina and my mother to Minneapolis to teach for three days at Vogue Knitting Live. I taught a combination of yarn and fibre dyeing classes as well as a spinning class and worked with 60 students over 15 hours of teaching. I flew home from the US and then the next day, there was a new President. Despite being Canadian, our lives and our work are so closely intertwined with American knitters, designers, and business owners, it has been an intense and emotional time since Tuesday. While part of me wants to throw up my hands and panic a little, I feel like I learned something this past weekend that I’m going to try to practice a lot more of from now on.
Bringing an 8-month old baby on a work trip is not the most ideal situation but when the opportunity came, I thought back to how Dan and I traveled with Russell to the UK and Italy when he was the same age and I figured we could do it. This time around, Dan stayed home to take care of Russell while my mother joined me on the trip to watch Nina. Initially, I was quite nervous … when will she fall asleep? when will we eat? where will we go for dinner? and on and on… but as the days passed, I observed the peaceful, almost zen-like feeling that my mother gave me, and slowly my anxiety faded away, replaced by time enjoying Nina’s smiles and laughter. My mother, having raised three babies of her own, has a “just roll with the punches” demeanor that I’ve decided I need to incorporate into my life as well. Nina falling asleep at an inopportune time? Well, just roll with it. Nina fussing while I shower? Well, we’ll just deal with it when it happens.
A lot of feelings of panic and anxiety are swirling in this social and political climate right now and while I might like to also freak out for a moment, I also realize that I need to keep it together. I need to roll with the punches. I have a team of committed and passionate people to encourage. And I have two young kids to raise. I need to keep it together for my sake and for their sakes.
Today, on Remembrance Day, we celebrate our “baby” Russell’s 3rd birthday (already!?!). It’s a day of joy, fun, and celebration, but it’s also a day of deep gratitude for the country and peace in which we live. On this day, I feel especially solemn about the responsibility I have to raise this child. He’s three now. He can feed himself, put on his own socks, and he can understand reason. He looks to us for the way to behave and how to say things. He looks to us when things get dicey and he needs us to lead him confidently, compassionately, and cheerfully.
He’s three today. At the end of this presidency, he’ll be seven. It’s a delicate, precious, and impressionable time. I want so much for him to have excellent role models and to learn to be a good, generous, and kind-hearted person. I honestly can’t say what the future will bring. I will just keep going, focusing on the good, and just rolling with the punches.