An Open Letter to All During A Tough Time

By Chelsey Blair (She/They)

Volunteer Coordinator

Hello to our Dear Community Members,

It’s been a minute, hasn’t it?

I don’t know about you, but moving into 2022 has been a big challenge for me, and I imagine things aren’t much different for you all. With Omicron making the rounds with expediency and the onset of completion of a second year in A State of Emergency, things probably feel pretty bleak on top of normal Not Great feelings this time of year.

The end of the year is a tough time for a lot of folks in our community. The family we were raised in can be fraught for any of us due to discrimination rooted in the family system, or just having to see that one relative each year at dinner and “be nice”. It can be exhausting, and a lot of emotional labour to navigate. This can leave us with a bit of a residual mood dip afterwards and moving into the New Year. Combine this with darker weather, and it’s no wonder our wellness, coping skills, and ability to feel enjoyment in our lives is put to the test.

Now, at Q we are aware that it’s not always possible for folks to buy a product or access a service and call it self care. We know that bath bombs are expensive, and that no amount of journalling or meditation will alleviate the real systemic oppressions we all face due to the ever-presence of White Supremacy, Capitalism, and our super-bestie Heteropatriarchy.

SO, with that caveat in mind, here are some things the folks at Q have been trying to do to stay Relatively Okay, Considering – at this time.

Reach Out To Someone You Haven’t Heard From In A While

You know that friend you wish would text you more? Send them a note. If you have the means, maybe even send them a treat you know they would appreciate. Even if you think they’re busy, it will feel good to try to connect with them. Who knows, they might even return the favour.

Ask Someone to Start Reading A Book With You

Reading is fun, but what’s even more fun is going through the highs and lows of a well-written character with someone to dish about it with. Ask a friend if there’s anything they have been meaning to read, and see if they’re interested in reading it with you. We have found that phone narration, or just agreeing to set aside the same time frame and planning to chat about it when you get to a benchmark is a great way to stay in touch, and absorb some cool storytelling.

Make a Playlist For a Friend

Gone are the days of mixtapes, but we can still put together a list of music we like, music we think they would like, or both. We can do this for ourselves or for a friend. Consider even making one for someone who’s not with us anymore so you have something you created to remind yourself of them.

Do An Activism

Find your favorite social issue, find the people working on that issue, and ask them what they need. There is no need to reinvent the wheel here: lots of folks have been working on almost any issue you can think of for a long time! All you need to do is find them and ask if you can help. You may find that discovering a way to contribute to efforts of change is a great way to feel connected with the community, and is a sure-fire way to add some meaning and purpose to our lives.

What are some ways you have found meaning, connection, and coping skills lately? Please reach out and let us know! We would love to feature a list of community member ideas in another post.

Be well, y’all! Plz drink a water and have a nap I LOVE YOU. <3

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