What a week it has been. We conceived of the idea to make masks, designed a mask prototype, a second prototype, made a page, decided on how we would produce them, opened ordered, we sold about 1200 to individuals and families, raised enough to make about 1800 for hospital donation, and we made and shipped 400 all in one week. Can you believe that? I really can't. I didn't know that we had it in us. I am extremely proud of those who showed up, worked their asses off. The people who came and sweated and hustled will always have my appreciation. I am insanely proud of us. You all surprised me with your graciousness, your stamina, your self-lessness. I am honored to have such good people around me and at our little company. Our community is stepping up to help us make it happen and that is humbling and awesome. SO AWESOME! (in the big way, not the OMG way)
The people, the people, the people. David has worked tirelessly, without complaining, as is his way. He is such a good man. Emily is sewing, sewing, sewing, almost as if things were normal, gently correcting us when we give her the wrong piece. She was the first to volunteer her time. She is the only person we've ever found who could sew as fast as David. He admits she might even be faster or better. But it's hard to tell. Mike and I have done the glamorous work of making everything else easier for the sewing team, which means, cutting, staging, trimming and turning. Mike is full of good stories and a friendly crinkle at the corner of his eye. He's not a stranger to hard work either. Emma is co-coordinating all the shipping, all the questions, making it possible to do that other side, the getting them to the people side. She never fails to make me smile. I don't think it's just me.
I keep thinking, "these are the times that try men's souls" which is a quote from Thomas Paine re The War for American Independence. I have a drum and bass remix that has that quote read in news-casterly perfect american English, it repeats in the track. I don't even know where the track is from, couldn't find it now if I wanted to. Chris Pratt pronounces on Instagram that we are being tested, I think he's pretty religious. I am not. But that's a story for another time. But it keeps echoing around my head. I am just impressed with the variousness of human kindness, there are scumbags of course, but they've always been there. It's all the goodness that is surging out of the cracks that has me feeling full, has me feeling faithful. (no not the god kind)
These are truly trying times. It seems that for most of us the hardest trials come from within. For me the external trials are glorious. How many masks can we make? How many can we help? My hands hurt. I am sore. Production is intense and we are doing it at breakneck speed. That's real, my body is tired, but watching people suffer is so much worse. Feeling helpless is my worst case scenario. I have a friend who will be living out of her car because her apartment was sold and nobody is showing apartments right now. She will live at my mom's in the extra room. Thank goodness. But there are so many who are frightened, lots who are beyond the ability to function, many who are feeling stuck, without choices.
I am at peace with the idea that I cannot control how my community will be affected. I cannot control if there will be cons in July or August or for the rest of the year, even though my business depends on it. I cannot go crazy wondering about things I cannot control. Everyone is in free-fall, but the reality is that there is no bottom. There is no wet crash at the end. Life is always a free-fall, we just insulate ourselves from that fact with our daily rituals and comfortable normalities. There will be no going back to normal. A new normal will emerge. We will learn to flourish in that new normal. It may not be fast, it certainly will not be linear. Today I have faith. Today I am impetuous like the crocuses in the snow.
Thank you to all those who donated, those who shared, those who cared.