My mind tonight is more restless than my legs. The somber predictions announced today by the Canadian Government weigh heavily, intermingled with the family worries of layoffs and isolation.
I count my blessings. I try to let go of what I can’t control, which frankly is about 98% of what is percolating around in my head. The gratitude is there and yet everything seems so … unsettled. It seems like the only word that will come to mind.
The wind tempo picks up outside and offsets the steady breathing of my other half. I give up and wander downstairs. Finding the blessing in the fact that at least I’m at home and don’t have to work in the morning. Insomnia sucks enough without an early alarm or being in someone else’s home where prowling at night seems out of place.
I rework the budget and tighten the belt a little more so that we can settle in for the long haul. I feel so incredibly thankful that I put in my 39 years and walked away with a decent pension. I also know that my casual employment will be there again when this is over and so I can look forward to that. Our investments, like everyone else’s, will just have to stay put for the long term run next they will climb back up. I make a mental note to talk with our financial advisor about a couple of items and leave a note of gentle reminder to my other half about doing the taxes this weekend.
I write the blog as it often helps to consolidate my ramblings. I think about the bigger picture; a 100 years ago Vimy Ridge lay covered in the bodies of so many dead Canadians and yet the country prevailed. Following on the heels of that blow was the 1918 Spanish flu that decimated even more around the world. The world picked itself up, dusted itself off and resumed.
Will the world be the same? That’s impossible to say at this moment. Perhaps some lessons will be learnt; by scientists, by nations and by the people themselves.
I had seen the writing below without any context, making the rounds on social media. It’s a 2020 poem by a retired American teacher/chaplain named Kitty O’Meara. Interesting that it keeps getting credited back to the 1869 cholera outbreak. Where, the world once again, had to pick itself up. Just like then we can’t see the enemy, unlike in war. The invisibility of it, the lack of protection from it, especially for those on the front line, is what’s so scary. The tone on the news tonight was that, until a vaccine is developed for it, this is the new normal. I think that’s what tipped the scales for me tonight onto the dark side.
But…. If I read the above words and if I focus on what I can control and what is good then I’ve got this.
I’m incredibly blessed to be able to video my grandchildren daily. I talk often with family and friends. I text regularly with my health care providers friends and ask about their mental health. I offer virtual hugs to all. I stay busy during the day with a wide assortment of projects. That’s never an issue. We have the space inside and out for good mental health in our relationship and our physical distancing. There is, as always, freezers full of food and the cold storage room. The blessings are there.
It’s when the night rolls on and sleep alludes me that I struggle. I think of the things that are missing; the special times with the grandchildren. Pizza nights with our kids. Dessert club with our friends. Patio parties to welcome spring. And I grieve a little bit but then I re-balance because tomorrow the sun will rise and I will roll out of bed (not early obviously) and go about the day. I will bike, read stories on video, clean bathrooms (’cause pandemics don’t just suddenly mean the bathroom is cleaner) and go for a walk. I will spend some creative time and some couples time. We will eat well and with any luck the sunshine will appear. All will be as right in my world as it can be at this moment and that’s what I will work on mastering.
PS – yes I’m ok. Just the act of writing the concerns down helps a lot. Knowing that my kind readers are listening helps immensely. I also think that what I have verbalized is probably running through the heads of a lot of people during this world wide crisis.