Hello everyone! Can you believe January is halfway over? Where did it go?! It’s that time again for another edition of Shining Moments –  weekly gratitude awareness and reflection.

This week was more of a struggle for me, felt like I was on an emotional roller coaster all week.
#Honestycheck:  You know it gets rough when you’re crying while eating pizza at the same time.

 

Shining Moments

– Airport greeting (Sunday and Monday) went really well, the group was super duper nice (18 hours spent at the airport lol)

– Got to train a coworker on her first Airport greeting, she did great and managed several on her own

– Got a nice nap in (5 hours!)

– Got an oil change (was about 8000 miles overdue) Front right tire was replaced (tread was SUPER low)

– Ended up finding out a boot was shredded, but found out it was cheaper to replace the section of the CV axle instead and the all end cost was cheaper than we expected

– Blackberry yogurt is amazing!

– Plans  to get that section of axle replaced  didn’t quite go to plan, but I had actually been on autopilot so instead of finding out the news where I got there, I was able to go home (and avoid rush hour traffic!), take a small-ish cat nap and then go out to do UberEats (my side hustle)

– I was given a “proposition” and “favor” to consider. I deeply thought about it and sought out family, friends and coworkers guidance (I already had the decision 75% made up, but there was a lot of factors involved and I wanted to make sure that I wasn’t being over-emotional about my decision.) I ended up telling the high ranking person my honest thoughts and concerns and that I had to respectfully decline. The entire meeting did not go as planned (I thought it would be like a 5 minute meeting, ended up being like 30 minutes and uncomfortable half of the time). While some of the consequences of that decision are in play, I stood my ground, found how just exactly how much I was worth to them, learned how supported I really am and gained some more confidence. The aftermath is now in my hands instead of someone else – I am in control of my own destiny and actions.

– Thankful for family, friends and coworkers listening to my dilemma and being honest 

– A coworker I nominated for Employee of the Month for December won (bonus point: I got a REALLY BIG hug from her)

– Axle section got replaced super easy (within like 30 minutes or so)

– Went to Aldi’s for groceries for our household and some to donate to the Lowcountry Blessing Boxes. Spent $70.29 total for 74 items, got 36 items for $19.84 to help out. 

– Made some decent money during the weekend – I know things are tight for a lot of people for a lot of different reasons

 

Reflection

This week’s reflection is about the power of community/support.

There is NO doubt that we are all feeling the effects of this government shutdown, whether you are a federal/government employee or not. The Coast Guard isn’t receiving a paycheck, national parks are shutting down, offices and agencies are backed up or shutdown, tax refunds are still up in the air, security is unknown. It’s also affecting families – is there food to be put on the table, is there money for school supplies to be bought when a child needs it, is there gas money for the car or even for a car payment, and loans/ bills are racking up or how to pay is unknown. People are having to make decisions and put themselves in hard circumstances in the name of simply surviving. For those not in shutdown, we’re seeing our jobs slow down – less eating out, less going out to bars, more rideshare drivers in the market, less grocery shopping, fewer cars getting fixed… the list can go on and on. Morale and positivity is low.

However, even in this chaotically uncertain time, it can be seen that families, neighbors and communities coming together. Coupons are being brought together in a group effort to spread the wealth (ie. really putting use to those Sam’s Club and Costco memberships), meals are being prepared and shared (many free for government people but some for all and any people), free or cheaper entertainment for those in shutdown, we’re seeing large corporations willing to work with people (such as forgiving a month for their credit card bill for a month). We’re seeing blessing boxes filled [even more] by the generosity of local people. We’re seeing more kindness efforts and more pay it forward moments. We are seeing people coming together to take care of one another in a time that seems to have no end in sight yet. When a disaster hits (natural or man-made), we see humanity as it should be, not warped by the hustle and bustle of “normal” everyday life and the messages thrown at us by society in all types of forms. The power of community, driven by kindness and support, is simply amazing.

 

Challenge

This week I am giving you a challenge – how can you support the human being closest to you?

Can you help your government or other struggling neighbors with a need they can’t meet right now?

Can you help families keep their heads above water?

Can you donate or make food?

Can you make blessing bags or leave items in a blessing box (there are also blessing boxes all throughout the entire Lowcountry area, check out Lowcountry Blessing Box Project locations for ideas or to help! This is a leave what you, take what you need.) These blessing boxes are exactly that – a blessing. There’s little to no driving since there are many boxes, no lines, no forms to fill out, no income requirements or maximums, they’re open 24 hours. If you can’t donate food, notes, toiletries and other care needs are appreciated too! (for soaps, please try to put in a baggie so the mashed potatoes doesn’t smell like pink grapefruit lol). If we can give 3 cans or boxed items each, we can all help another during this chaotic time.

Also, there are the free little libraries to donate books around now. If you have books (or even games) to donate (adults, teen, kids, baby books), I’m sure they would also be greatly appreciated to help keep the boredom down.

Can you spare a little money to donate to a cause or to a family so they don’t feel like they have to make a [bad] decision to be able to survive weekly or even daily? We all know that when we are in a panic, we don’t necessarily make the wisest decisions. This is something that has been forced upon many people (no politics here but arguably by one man’s decision and choice how to exercise his governmental power).

We got each other!

 

Wishing you an abundance of peace, happiness and positivity to see through the darkness and chaos.

Shine bright,

Love Jenn, Crescent Moon & Stars

Author: Jenn Bell