Last week I discovered a new word, one that really resonated for me in these weird times we’re going through.
The word is Qarrtsiluni, and it comes from the Inuit tribe of northern Alaska and Canada. It’s a verb, and it means to sit together in the darkness.
With the days getting shorter and dealing with the uncertainties of a resurging pandemic, I found this idea comforting. We truly don’t know what lies ahead, but in one way or another, we’re all affected.
It may be the small inconvenience of wearing a mask or forgoing restaurant meals, or the heartbreak of losing a loved one. How to face it?
Sit together — even if the closest we can get is over the phone.
We’re not a nation that’s very good at waiting, but there are times when that’s the wisest course, and it strikes me as appropriate that this advice comes to us from the original people of our land. After all, today is Native American Heritage Day.
Yesterday we celebrated all we had to be thankful for. Today, as the emails flood our boxes offering retail therapy for all that ails us, I’m going in the opposite direction.
Just sitting quietly. Waiting.