1. The first step is admitting that you are powerless over your complete and total transformation into a Netflix Infused Sugar Cookie. Admit this first to yourself and then God and another human being.
2. When your husband says he's worried about your health because it's clear you've been gaining weight make it even more clear that it would have been better for both of your health if he'd just let you die.
3. Stay up later each night and sleep a little later each morning even when you SHOULD BE DOING THE EXACT OPPOSITE. It gives the day a surreal, dreamlike quality that can create a gentle glowy haze around reality.
4. Even though you no longer have the receipt, consider returning your brain to Target. Maybe you can trade it in for some of the nice Valentine's candy they already have on display. Instead buy new black stretch pants covered in little silver stars.
5. Dread getting back into your teaching/writing schedule but the INSTANT your butt hits the chair and your hand hits the page, realize that writing in this way is SAVING YOUR LIFE and you love it with all of your back-logged heart.
6. Write your heart out and then, write it back in. Remember you actually love the people you love and want the life you actually have and have been at it for 40 years for better for worse and this year is GOING TO BE BETTER.
7. Have an anxiety dream that you have one hour to present an hour long talk on language and race and then IN REALITY get asked to give a 20 minute presentation on language in 2 weeks. With a power point presentation. That will be video-taped. Forget everything you know about language and then remember a few things that you know in your heart to be true. Get excited. Then terrified. Then excited. Think about language 24 hours a day, nonstop, until you are a language loop on repeat.
8. When you are exhausted from fruitlessly trying to control everything around you drop everything around you and go to a yoga class where in savasana the teacher reads this poem that you vow throughout the rest of savasana to read again when you get home.
9. Ask for help and then allow yourself to receive it. Pray and then allow yourself to listen. Remember everything you are learning about loving yourself. Light the candles. Take the bath. Show up. Let go. You are ready for Week 2.