My family often uses the expression "fairies" to explain the unexplainable. Why?
When my children were much younger the family was riding an escalator and the younger son asked why his hair was blowing when we were inside a building. My husband and older son both began factually correct discussions about air pressure and speed.
The younger one (maybe 3 years old at the time) was clearly not satisfied, nor did he understand. After a few minutes of intelligent answers I finally said "it's fairies blowing on your head. Special ones, that live near escalators." To which my younger son replied. "Oh. Ok."
THAT answer satisfied my young son. My husband and older son were appalled, but frankly, I was ok with the conversation ending that way. I knew when he was older he would understand the right answer. But at that moment in time, fairies blowing on your head was ok.
As a mom, I have to confess some of the most frustrating conversations I had with my children began with the word "Why." "Why can't I. . . " "Why are you . . ." "Why is there. . . " And I also confess that often, those conversations ended with the time tested "because I said so."
No one finds that answer satisfying.
Over the past few months, like you, I've found myself asking "why" about many many things. And often, the answers were as unsatisfying as the one I used to give my kids. I don't know why we are so divided, or why some people can't accept science, or why we keep having the same conversations year after year, decade after decade, without any real progress toward solving the problems.
In addition to thinking about the societal "why's" I spent some of the time thinking about Gratitude. Why did I start this business. Why did I choose this very competitive industry. Why do I think Gratitude (the company), and gratitude (the state of being) matter, and why do I want to share this with the world.
It always comes back to the realization that living intentionally, with gratitude can be life changing. Certainly when I decided to see what I had, not what I believed I lacked, my life became much richer.
It was not an easy journey for me. I had to sit with some hard emotions and think about the ways I had defined myself and acknowledge that sometimes, I had not been the person I really wanted to be. That's not so fun. But, accepting those facts, looking at life as it is, feeling the abundance of this moment and accepting that the future is boundless, even if unknown, fills me with happiness and hope.
Why Gratitude? Because you deserve to feel happy and hopeful, too. And I know that getting to this point takes more than mind over matter. It requires intention, and grace and compassion for others but mainly for yourself.
Gratitude (the company) exists to provide you with gentle reminders to care for yourself, to forgive yourself and to see that what you have right now is enough for the present moment and that tomorrow and the day after hold promise.
Whether it's our social media posts, the blog, our website or the products, Gratitude's "why" is to provide an opportunity for you to slow down, to honor yourself and your journey and to encourage you to see what you have and how amazing you are. That's not just a marketing message. It's why I keep looking for ways to make Gratitude better and why, over the next few weeks, you will be seeing some changes.
We have developed new products (a face mask and a lip conditioner) re-worked a favorite (bath bombs) to better meet your needs, and why we've re-committed to earth friendly and will be offering re-fills, so we can reduce the amount of plastic and packaging that's floating around out there. It's also why we are doing some re-design work on the website.
We want to make it easier to navigate, easier to find the information you are seeking about Gratitude and the products and easier to share more relevant information so you can fill yourself with more gratitude, hope and happiness.
It's challenging right now. We are living in a world where some people want us to believe the equivalent of "fairies blowing on your head" is an acceptable answer to a lot of really hard questions. Let's face it, that's not rational. We know that, but we don't like ambiguity. To relieve that ambiguity we create unsatisfactory, sometimes false, narratives to explain things that are beyond our present understanding.
Rather than just sitting with and exploring the discomfort that comes with uncertainty, or exploring the discomfort that comes with facts that may require us to change the way we think about things, we want something to relieve the anxiety right now. Sitting with the discomfort, having those hard conversations, struggling with our own insecurities and prejudices requires a lot of energy and honesty.
Seeking answers to the "why" questions can awaken some pretty powerful emotions. It can also lead to some big break throughs.
We can admit we don't have answers to all of the "why's" we are currently facing. That's ok. We don't always need an instant answer. We just need to commit ourselves to living this moment intentionally, with gratitude, and in the best way we can. And the rest, well, maybe we'll leave that to the fairies.