Today felt dark in almost every way: being January, the days are short, the clouds are thick and the rain is heavy. The world is on fire and under water. Democracy is being tested by hatred, racism, greed, and populism. And I had overwhelming eco-anxiety.
It would have been easy to just be alone.
To give in to my body’s desire to lay down and stew in the darkness. To lose perspective and take life incredibly seriously.
But my son snuck into my office and climbed up into my lap. He didn’t say anything in his usual garbled, two-year-old babbles. He just took his stuffed polar bear, jammed its cold nose into my face and made a loud ‘smack’ sound with his lips: a polar bear kiss for Daddy.
He hopped down and toddled off without a word. And my eyes watered.
I'm often struck by the dichotomy felt as a parent living in the age of the climate crisis. On one hand, my longing for a healthy and safe future for my kids is strong enough to create anxiety and darkness. On the other, seeing the world through their eyes helps me find perspective and light.