HOPE is a Four Letter Word

By: LUMO Leaders

- Publish On: February 3, 2022

Hello mothers and others,

Hillary here. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about…


Maybe it’s the start of the new year or perhaps it’s my mind, body, and soul’s response to being exhausted and challenged by the ever-changing, out of control world we find ourselves living in right now. Whatever it is, HOPE is on my mind and I wanted to share a few thoughts that you may find supportive.

It seems like everywhere I look there’s some new thought or report on what it means to parent in the pandemic. Everyone has an opinion, and those opinions seem super bleak. Article after article, social media post after social media post, they ramble on about how utterly dire things are for working parents. It’s seriously overwhelming and really, really discouraging. 

Where’s the hope? 

I find the collective experience, along with my own limiting beliefs, often keeps me from having the experience I want to be having. It’s so easy to get swept up in the doom and gloom narrative we see and hear every day.

I’ll give you an example. Omicron came knocking (very loudly) at our door over the holidays just in time to cancel all the plans I made for what I had hoped would be a “perfect” holiday. Talk about a wave of crushing disappointment. If my story had been on the front page of the Times it would have read, “Hillary’s Holiday RUINED! Poor, poor Hillary!” 

Now as a coach, I truly believe we get to change our headlines. So that’s what I did.

I did a major pivot, and together, my family and I made a list of all the things we could do instead of focusing on what we couldn’t do. Some of the things on the list  included:  We could watch movies in our pjs, bake oodles and oodles of cookies, make ornaments for grandparents and neighbors, and learn new games to play. 

“Breaking news: Hillary and Family Survive: Fun Had! Omicron Foiled!”

We ended up having a really lovely, relaxing time together. It wasn’t “perfect” but it most definitely wasn’t miserable. We acknowledged the crummy set of circumstances we were facing and decided we were going to flip the switch and write a new story for our holidays. We picked our own path forward.  We were curious, creative, and committed to enjoying ourselves, despite the situation we found ourselves in. 

And to me, that’s hope in action. 

Desmond Tutu once said:

“Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all the darkness.” 

And, man, there’s a lot of darkness right now. But, we get to decide how we want to be about it.  For me, I choose to lean into the hope, pull back the blinds, and look for all the light that surrounds me. How about you?

Will you choose a heaping dose of hope today? 

What does hope look like for you?

I’d love to hear your thoughts. 

Here with you in leadership and parenting,

Hillary & the LUMO team

PS – Here is one of my favorite poems by Emily Dickinson 

“Hope” is the thing with feathers –

That perches in the soul –

And sings the tune without the words –

And never stops – at all –

And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –

And sore must be the storm –

That could abash the little Bird

That kept so many warm –

I’ve heard it in the chillest land –

And on the strangest Sea –

Yet – never – in Extremity,

It asked a crumb – of me. 

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