Fear can change us

Today I am sad. Sad that so many people are so frightened that they can think only of themselves. Fear can make you do terrible things. Rushing into the stores and taking all the things off the shelves that others need is a perfect example. That kind of thinking frightens me more than the virus.I hope that they begin to realize the selfishness of their thinking.

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Each of us will need to tamp down our fear and help where we can. As a nurse, I worked for years where I was exposed to illnesses. I was stuck with a needle from a baby who was being tested for Hepatitis.  I have cared for AIDS patients when there were no medicines and no cure. Good, really, good hand-washing and other needed steps helped me and others remain disease free.

There is a real threat but if we take the proper precautions we will lessen the risk. That doesn’t include hoarding all the toilet paper (why?) and hand sanitizer. It includes being a responsible and caring person.

When the truth can hurt

Truth may be vital but without love it is unbearable. from “The Two Popes.”

We can get ourselves into a moral dilemma sometimes. We may find out something that we feel we need to tell someone but it may destroy their world. What to do?

tell the truth

Information is important but so is caring about others. It is just hard to know when to share that information and when not to. What if you know that someone is having an affair and you are friends with the other spouse? To tell or not tell…..that is the question.

There are lots of other moral scenarios where we may be called to judge if telling is worth the harm it can cause. Truth is good but love has to be considered.

Make it so

I love the church season of Advent. Not because of all the hoopla leading up to Christmas. Advent doesn’t feel red and green like Christmas. For me it feels blue. A beautiful, peaceful, serene blue. I imagine pictures with stars and the stable with the infant Jesus. I see calm and deep peace. I love listening to Christmas music and singing along. I suppose because the music plays at this time instead of the weeks of Christmas leading to Epiphany.

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Advent is a time for expecting. The world is pregnant with hope. People seem kinder, more giving, more open. It is sad that we can’t remain this way all year long. We need to learn from this period of expectation that things can be better. We can be more caring of others. We can live together in peace. Let’s make it so.

Be kind

 

Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.    Plato

I have realized how very true this is. I have met so many people who, on the surface, seem to have everything together. It is only when I get to know them that I find out what is under the surface.

Sometimes those things we don’t see will cause someone to be angry or unpleasant. We will want to get away from the as fast as we can. Another person my be upbeat and bubbly. We like them right away. We gravitate to people like this. It is only when they are comfortable sharing their inmost thoughts that we discover the trauma and pain they have endured.

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It is easier to be kind to the upbeat person. It is a natural response. It is much harder to be kind to those whose behavior turns us off. The truth is both need our compassion and understanding. Kindness goes a long way toward making someone’s day better. You never know what good you may have passed on.

Reflecting

Tonight is a little bit hard to write. I am hoping that on Monday we will have countertops for the bathroom. They have failed to be here several times and it makes me doubt that they will be here on Monday.

to lose a friend

Life continues to throw sadness at me. A friend of my husband’s has died. I know that both of us are feeling how fleeting life is. As we get older and is sometimes difficult to face the fact that you have few years left in front of you.

 

But most of the time that’s not what I think about. Most of the time I like to think about what can be done. What things can I do? How can I give someone a smile or a helping hand. Those are the things that seem to make my life worthwhile at this point.

Each time I can do something for someone there is a warmth that washes over me. I know that this is where my joy lies.There is nothing that can take away your own worries or sadness more than being of help to someone else.

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Not concentrating on yourself but thinking of others doesn’t allow thinking about yourself. Be of help to someone today. It will be the best help for you.

Scary things

Today I am again using the Dragon software so forgive any grammar errors.

This has been a quiet day. I did have to attend the funeral of the young man with children who died. The funeral was a real tribute to him. There must’ve been at least 300 people there. Sad though it was his funeral was a celebration of his life.

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There is always something so much sadder about the death of a young person. We feel as if there are things that are unfinished. Someone told me many years ago that in truth the death of a young person is not a life unfinished. That each of us has our own lifespan. It is a lifespan set for us alone. For some reason that gave me comfort.

Death is something that we all come to. It is something that we all have to face. Many people fear death. For me death itself is not frightening. It is the dying that we don’t look forward to.

There are so many things in life that can frighten us. For those of us who suffer with anxiety it seems that we can be afraid of almost anything. Although I think each of us has certain things that trigger our anxiety. I know that some things that might disturb me might not be bothersome at all to someone else. I think each of us has to discover what are the things that set us off.

consistency
Over time with help we can learn management of our own triggers. The thing is we have to practice and keep up by exercising those tools frequently. If we think we can just use them when we are in a panic it won’t work. I think that is the hardest part. Reminding ourselves daily to meditate or pray or whatever it is that works for us to use it. Consistency is the answer.

No matter what we have to keep on going, keep on working, keep on hoping, and keep on living.

Perspective

sadness-depression

It seems that sad things come in groups. As I said in my last post a young man has gone into Hospice leaving a wife and two children. Today we got the news that one of our friends has had a reurrence of a brain tumor that has remained small and idle. It is now growing rapidly and although not malignant will still be a serious problem. We don’t know yet how it will be handled and what the prognosis will be. The last surgery for it left considerable physical deficits.

Another friend’s daughter was in a serious auto accident. Someone crossed the middle line and hit her head on. The good news it that her injuries can heal in time. Her son, who was also in the car is fine. So in the bad there is good.

It is time for some good news and happy outcomes. Hearing these sort of stories certainly brings our own problems down to size. The frustration about the mess in my home is minor by comparison.

blessings

 

Hearing the tragedies around us can adjust out perspective in an instant. Tragedies around the world matter but they seem worse when close to home happening to those we know.

It is time to stop and count my blessings.

Invisible

I was watching a tv program and there was a scene in a nursing home. One of the elderly men was talking about being there. He said the hardest part was being invisible. When we are younger we have an identity. We are handsome or beautiful, pretty or a nurse, doctor or workman. We have something to connect to. As we age we are just called old. Not connected to anyone or anything. Nothing special.

It is so sad but having visited nursing homes he is so right. The elderly are invisible. But they have had lives. They have stories to tell. We need to acknowledge them.

God’s creatures

butterfly-effectThis morning as I was driving out of my driveway I saw what looked like a small creature lying beside the drive. As I passed I could see it was a small, possibly baby, raccoon. It lifted its head and shook in fear as I went by. It was obviously hurt. I assume it was hit by a car. As I paused and watched it gave a last breath and was gone. Sitting for a moment to be sure he/she was gone and then went to my appointment.

This quick incident really bothered me. I felt so much empathy for the poor creature that tears were close. It had such a short life. I really saw it as one of God’s creatures and said a prayer for its passing. I saw the same imagery as with the dogs and pictured it moving over the rainbow bridge. I can’t help experiencing grief over any creature I see in pain. I wish I could have helped but there was nothing to be done. We will give him/her a decent burial.

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I can’t help but see all of creation being linked and the death of one creature, flower, tree, insect being part of the whole. I know I am epathic and can feel pain for the smallest thing but we all should feel that loss. It is what we have ignored for too long.

Go little raccoon, over the rainbow bridge and join those who have gone before you.

 

Please no more this year..for everyone

train in tunnel

Hopefully today there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Just hoping it is not a train. Our portion of the shoreline has been downgraded to “tropical storm” which we can handle. We have nor-easters here which are about the same. Nevertheless we will keep a close watch.

I still weep for the people in the Bahamas. I can’t even begin to imagine what it has been like to see that storm battering away for days without a break. I pray there are no more for them this season. What must it be like to have your home torn apart and not just yours but your neighbors and most of the island. I know that other places see this kind of devastation from earthquakes, tornadoes, fires etc. but it is always terrible.

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We all need to do what we can to help the recovery there. It will be a long time recovering.