We each bear our own burdens

Ahhhhh! Today I worked in the garden. Just being in the fresh air and doing something ordinary gave me a new lease on life. Good physical work with my mind concentrated on the job. It really felt good.

I read the post today from https://fracturedfaithblog.com/2020/03/24/coronavirus-northern-ireland-3/ and learned that they are restricted  in their outdoor time. I am so thankful that we can spend as much time outdoors as we want. Of course we are in a neighborhood with lots of room to move about without coming within yards of anyone else. I would really be stressed if I had to stay indoors. I feels such compassion for those in New York City who are also trapped….usually in very small apartments.

burdens
The answer is both!

There are always people who are worse off than we are. Each of us has restrictions with this virus but each place is different. The only burdens we bear are the ones around us. I have talked before about not wanting other’s problems. This is a perfect example. As an older couple we are staying in except for food and medicine. Many do not have to restrict themselves so much. I don’t feel put upon because of this. It is our own cross to bear and we are grateful to have lived this long and pray for many more days.

I am sure that we all hope that these restrictions don’t last for a really long time. Most of us can live with a few weeks or more but months would be horrible.

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Please take care, stay healthy, and from the nurse. WASH, WASH, WASH YOUR HANDS!

Over the hill?

With all the hype about the Corona Virus is has been a shock to me to realize that my husband and I are in the high risk zone. Good grief are we now really old? I remember riding in the car with my mother when she was 95 and she said “I think I can consider myself old.”

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That is what I was hoping to do but heavens all the news people are making it clear that we are already there! I refuse to believe it.

My children have also called to warn us about being around large groups of people. It reminded me of the time they told me to make baby blankets so that if I was not around there would be some for their grandchildren. Have we fallen into the Twilight Zone?

We will be cautious as that is the smart thing to do but really!

 

Hospice: a hope for peace

Hope. Not a tangible things but real none the less. Hope can transform us. Help us to live each day. I think that’s why Emily Dickinson called it “the thing with feathers.” It can make us fly.

I know that some times there doesn’t seem to be any hope but I wonder if it has to do with what we hope for. As a nurse I have seen patients who don’t have a chance to survive what they are going through. No hope as they or family can see and hope for life is not there. There may be a different kind of hope. Hope that we find in the programs from Hospice. Hope that death can be better than the alternative.

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I don’t know how I got so deep into this topic but I have seen those for whom death would be a blessing. It’s not the plan any of us want but some day it will come. I “hope” that when it does we can find acceptance, love and a peaceful end.

Coping

Life can be challenging. Sometimes things become overwhelming and we feel as if we are drowning. The feeling that one more thing will put you over the edge is awful. When that happens we have to use any tools we have in our tool box to bring us back from the edge. Many ideas have been brought up in the blogs on Word Press and I have tried many of them. Some work and some don’t. The good news is that we can try different things and see what works for us.

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My granddaughter says that every school should teach Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. She says that all children need to learn the skills that are taught in that program. I suspect  she is right. There are so many issues cropping up with children today that we have to change something.

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I feel that I was lucky to have learned many coping skills from my mother but I am not sure that many people have that advantage today. We are such a society of quick fix that we don’t learn to cope with anything. One of the doctors that I worked for said that what people want is to come to a drive-in window and have the doctor reach out and say “heal” and it will be done.

Coping is learned when faced with real life. If we think that nothing should ever go wrong we are much mistaken. I worry about people who have never faced up to a major problems as they have not learned how to cope.

Evaluating

Next week I have signed up for two tasks at the Mediation Center. One is a Community Conference with two children involved and the other is a standard mediation. The Community Conferences (I’ll call them CC) are hard. It is so sad to work with these teens and hope to get them to see there are better ways to deal with conflict that violence. In some ways I am not looking forward to it. I will keep on doing them for now and may have to evaluate if it is for me.

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The other mediation is simple and sometimes it can be too simple but there is not stress involved. It is hard to weigh them against each other. I will just keep on for now and see how this goes.

Ethical dilemmas

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Recently I wrote about the things that will be coming in the future and there are still some things that I can see ahead. I wonder what will happen with genetics. Will we be able to solve and end children being born with serious defects? Will we be wise enough to use the research in an ethical manner? As our knowledge of our most basic programming grows will we be able to use it for good? It seems that there is always someone who can corrupt the good.

Will we use extending life for everyone or just the uber-rich? Will extending life be for the good or will it create issues we can’t even imagine?

There are so many ethical issues facing us as our knowledge of smaller and smaller particles put us at risk. The same is true of our understanding of the universe and all it entails. With ethical behavior seeming to decline how will we cope with information that could change everything?

'Yep, that does sound like an ethical dilemma, Phil. But relax... it's only a problem if you have a conscience.' 'That's just it! I think I do!!' 'Don't worry, I won't tell a soul.'

I probably will not be here to see how this all comes about but I pray that our ethical and moral decline will turn around and we will have the wisdom to do the right thing.

Don’t give up

Life is an amazing journey. I my lifetime I have married, raised children, sent them out of the nest, welcomed grandchildren and now great-grandchildren. I have worked several jobs, had a great career and ended doing the one thing that married my vocation with my greatest passion.

the amazing journey
the amazing journey

I have lived but I (God willing) have years in me left to pursue other goals. Those of you who have been reading my blog know that one of my goals is to share experiences, offer solace and kindness, information, and ideas that I have gained over the years.

I have also made strides in controlling my tendency to worry myself into anxiety. I continue to grow each day and owe much thanks to the others who deal with this issue and have offered support and suggestions for conquering it.

In the scheme of things it is probably that something fought with over a lifetime will not disappear entirely but learned skills do help in catching escalation to the “tipping point.”

The trick is to keep trying things and find what works for you. Each of us will have different things that help. Just keep trying. There is something out there that will be the thing that helps you turn the corner. Our mental health issues can, many time, be lessened or averted with the right tools.

Anonymous-quote-Inspirational-quote-Theres-always-hope-even-when-you-are-at-the-lowest-point-of-your-life.-Keep-believing

Never give up. Just keep on trying. Also don’t think you are alone. There are many of us and we truly understand.

Can legislating over medicating work?

From my own experience in the hospital recently and now with my granddaughter’s stay it is interesting how things have changed. Following my surgery the doctor was reluctant to give me any pain medication that could be addictive. The same thing was true with my granddaughter. The government has cracked down so hard that it is causing problems for patients who genuinely need some help following surgery. That is the problem with doing things that give little discretion to the people involved.

Overprescribing Painkillers

I know we have serious drug issues here but I’m not sure that what is being done will solve the issue. I don’t know that legislation can solve the drug problems in the US. The problem is to complex for that. People who want to abuse drugs will get them elsewhere. Admittedly physicians overused RX’s in the past and people became addicted but I hope that trend is past.

Somehow there has to be a happy medium.

De-stress

It has been difficult to find time to write in the last few days. We have some family here from out of town and finding time alone is not easy. I miss it but I am also enjoying my family. This has been a good holiday but I will be glad to get back to normal.

One of the things that can be hard is to not be in a normal routine. It throws us off and makes it harder to relax. I will work through it in order to enjoy the time that we have together.

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The holiday season can be stressful for most of us. It is easy to obsess over shopping and wrapping and cooking until we are worn to a frazzle. In  the new year it is time to check how you are feeling and take some extra time to de-stress. The time after holidays can also be a let down. When we were living at West Point the cadets called it “gloom period.” If you live where the trees have all lost their leaves everything looks gray. It can make your life feel gray.

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Find something to brighten your life. Go out to lunch or dinner. Treat yourself to a bubble bath or eat your favorite food. It will help you slide into the new year ready to embrace it.

Not at home yet

find the roadThere are some times when I wear my feelings on my shoulders. Since coming back to my husband’s church I have not really felt at home there. It is not anything about the church but about me. After 20 years of working in a church there is so much I could share but I can’t. I offer to help and usually end up stepping on someones toes. Other people need space to do things…my turn is past. I don’t want to be in charge if anything…just offer experience. Even after several years I feel as if part of me is missing. The only change has to be made by me. (the hardest person to change)

The frustration I experience when I am at the church is painful. The best thing may be to go somewhere else for a while where I don’t feel that pull. If everything is unfamiliar I may not have such a strong reaction. At least it is worth trying to see if it helps.

As we get older we have so much to share and don’t often get the opportunity to do so. This blog has been a wonderful way to at least offer my experiences in the hope that they may help others. It has kept me centered and moving forward. This is a blessing.