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.

Rainbow-Bridge-heaven

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.

Still waiting but coping

kind-of-coping-9781507209189_lgAnother day just waiting. The workers who are redoing our bathroom will not be able to work this week so we will just continue toughing it will stuff everywhere. Who know that fixing a bathroom would be such a big deal? We are very lucky that we tore it out since we discovered that a major leak had been occurring under the tile. Before long one of us would have fallen through the floor. I am so glad that we are able to fix this now.

Life is never boring. At least that has been my experience. Life has had nice lulls. Just enough time to think it might continue when something else comes along. This is a pattern I have learned to accept and manage to absorb.

sharing wisdom

I am sure that age has something to do with my perspective. I’ve had a long time to learn how to roll with things. There are still things that can wreck my calm but after a short while of acceptance I usually can move on. I wish I had been able to manage this well when I was younger. I hope that my sharing my experiences is helpful to others. It is a major thought in everything I write.

May all those who are threatened by Hurricane Dorian be safe.

Still waiting

golden-retriever-sits-outside-stWe still have no idea what the hurricane will do. It is moving so slowly so we just have to continue to wait and see. We do have somewhere to go if we have to leave but it is not easy, at our age, to board up the house. We have metal shutters but they have to be carried around to the front and screwed in. we will manage but hope we don’t have to.

Again I feel such anguish for those in the Bahamas. It sounds as if the islands will just be swept over with water. I hope that anyone still there survives.

Even though we are waiting life itself goes on as usual. It’s funny that I am not triggered by this situation. It is physical problems that trigger me. Each of us has different things that set us off. It is helpful to know what it is.

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I hope that the people redoing the bathroom will be able to work some this week but who knows. Again it will be a waiting game. I guess waiting will be my middle name for the near future. I will be testing my patience. Not something I am especially good at.

Waiting

waiting-isnt-punishment-its-preparationAs I said yesterday, waiting to find out what a hurricane will do is tedious terror. My sincere hope is that it goes out to sea and spares anyone the trauma of a major storm. All we can do is wait. Not something fun in the best of circumstances. So we do the best we can by being ready to leave or just hunker down for the duration. The price we pay for living in all the beauty around us.

Prayer, meditation and calm are in order for the next few days. If we get to stay and just wait out any rain and wind it can be absolutely beautiful. Mother Nature in full charge can be amazing to watch. I love to sit on the porch, when possible, and just experience the beauty of it all.

Thoreau-empathy-quote

I feel so much anguish for the Bahamas. The amount of devastation on those islands can be unbelievable. I weep for them.

Help where you can!

Yesterday I didn’t write which is unusual for me. I spent the afternoon with my friend while someone came to get a history on her husband and help to evaluate her husbands mental status. He has had such a devastatingly physical journey that it has taken its toll. It took all afternoon to get it all down on paper.

She wanted me there because I have been on a good bit of this journey with her and could help with the history. Just having someone write it all down made me realize what an extensive and harrowing time it has been.

I feel so humbled by how she has weathered this whole scenario and my heart aches for all she has been through with him. I don’t think anyone can appreciate the level of exhaustion and stress seen when a long illness puts their partner into the caregiving role.

fragile

It is so important for caregivers to have time away from the situation. Without it their physical and mental status is at risk. It is a blessing when help can be afforded but in some cases that is not possible.

Most people just keep going and hate to ask for help. Frequently there are friends, neighbors, church members or others who would be willing to sit for a while with the ill person. When they do it is important for the caregiver to do something for themselves…..meet friends for lunch, go outdoors away from home, or whatever rejuvenates them. Too often they take that time for errands and tasks that must be done. This may be necessary but even a short while doing something they love will help.

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If you know someone who is a caregiver take the time to offer help. Be specific. Tell them you can sit for them or run errands or, if they can, take them out. Caregivers need all the help we can give. It is so easy to continue with our own agenda but remember those who have no time for themselves.

How will we cope?

Life can be so demanding. The things that happen not only to us but to others can be devastating. I have friends who have suffered with long term problems that are just there day in and day out. I honestly don’t know how some people manage to keep going.

coping long term

The friends that I know who are struggling still greet me with a smile and a sense that things are ok. I don’t see the stress that I know is under the smile. They are not putting a smiling face on as a false mask. Occasionally they will share the devastation that is part of their lives but they don’t allow it be in charge. I so admire that ability.

positive attitudeAttitude is everything. The ability to assess life and accentuate the positive is a gift and one that I hope I would have in their circumstances. We can be bombed by the things that happen to us but we have to learn to adjust out attitude. Life is for living not for bemoaning. We are entitled to spend some time asking ourselves “why me?” We need time adjusting to a new life but when that is done hopefully we can be like my friends, and no matter the tragedy, have some time for smiles.

Tears fall

I am sad. Lucy has not been found yet. I am sad for my daughter and her family and sad for Lucy. This is not the end anyone wanted for that poor girl dog. She had such a bad life before. These things happen in life and I think they remind us that everything does not always go the way we want.

Life can be challenging. There are times of joy and times of sadness. Both are important because they are joined. There is not one without the other. I don’t think we would understand how important our good times are if there were not bad times.

The older I get the more empathy I feel. Tears come easily but I don’t mind that. Tears can be cleansing.

rain drops

Tears

Tears fall easily

their drops wash

my face

 

Etching the sorrow

my heart endures

as they fall

 

washing some

of the pain

from my soul

 

each tear

offers solace

and cleansing peace

 

Share yourself

Our society expects us to maintain a facade. We must never seem broken or fragile. Society sees this a weakness. Underneath all of that the reality is that it is frightening. If you are shattered maybe that will happen to me.

Think about how we greet people. “How are you? I’m fine.” We may be suffering but oh dear we better not share it. I have heard people respond “not okay” and the other person doesn’t even acknowledge what has been said. Too often we don’t want to hear it. It might draw us into the pain and suffering that we don’t want to see.

In truth, most of us are balanced on a precipice and feel that a little shove might push us over. We wouldn’t want anyone else to see this as that would diminish us in their eyes.

Most of my life people have sought me out to share their fears and their pain. I don’t think I am at all special. It is because I have never hidden my own wounds and am willing to open myself to others. I’m not sure why I am this way but it is who I am. Being this way is not always comfortable but it has given me the opportunity to show compassion and love.

Never be afraid to share your true self. Some will turn away but it is their own fears that cause that. Showing others how you have learned and continue to move on will give them hope.

 

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