Tuesday, July 23, 2019

#sol19 Thanks for the Rain

I'd slept fitfully for several nights as the heat and humidity built up both outside and inside my home. The over-sized, Casablanca-style, fan usually did the trick; not this week. The first warnings of thunderstorms and flash floods had been 24 hours ago! I was tired, grumpy and waiting for a break in the weather when finally, the sky took on that familiar dark blue hue.

I hunkered down through the first, second, third and fourth rounds of the storm as water poured from the sky and the temperature slowly began to drop. I ventured out through the flooded streets to rescue a commuter; however, this was not to be a night for errands!

Several hours after it all started, the power and internet went out while the gentle rain continued as if on a mission to refresh the parched earth.

I opened the front door slowly to survey the damage and felt the peace, that follows a big storm, envelope the neighborhood. The change in the air was profound and so I sat for a while, on the porch, thankful for the rain even though it had caused delays, flooding, and accidents.

I thought of the power of water to harm and to help. I guess it's like so many things in life: coffee, chocolate, wine, fast cars. They help us in reasonable amounts; however, too much, is harmful.  Then, even though it was still fairly early, I went up the dark stairs, brushed my teeth in the dark, and climbed into the dark bed, thankful for the rain.

Friday, July 19, 2019

#sol19 It happened to someone today

Four years ago,  the life I was living came crashing to a halt. I was exhausted and hanging on for "summer" amidst end of the school year craziness and end of life care-giving when it happened. I was hot and tired and had a tire that was leaking like a sieve! I still had a few end of the year reports to do! I did not see it coming.

I spent the first weeks in a fog interspersed with relentless anxiety attacks. Later, I spent months in shock interspersed with tears. The days-weeks-months crept forward as I dealt with loss interspersed with challenges including settling an estate and moving forward. I walked endless miles trying to remain sane. I asked, "Why me?"  Most people did not notice my pain but my weight fell precipitously and I was not always present.

Amazingly, while my world was in shambles, I still needed to get up each day, go to work, buy groceries, and pay bills. One day, as I dealt with a particularly grumpy individual,
I started to tell my story, as if that would make him kinder to me!  It did not and in fact only made me feel worse!

I lost friends. I lost my home. I cried buckets of tears. I became depressed.

I went to therapy.I I stopped blaming myself. I started to smile. I joined a gym. I bought a new sofa. Slowly, and not without set backs, I was able to start living again. Some days, I smiled, I started to see that I could make the day a good one for me and for those around me. I'm still on the journey to recovery, whatever that is, but I am not alone on that journey that I now believe to be called life.

Every day, someone in your inner circle is facing something challenging, their own it!
Every day, someone you meet is facing something challenging, their own it!
Always, the its of life are life-altering and sometimes they are life ending.
Most of us have many its on the journey through life.

Yet, we all still must go to work, pay bills and buy groceries.
Be kind and patient with those around you.
I'm pretty sure lots of people had it happen today.

Remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." A.A. Milne 

Saturday, July 13, 2019

#sol19 Perspective

As I sat on the porch, working,
On descriptive statistics, 
The neighborhood was quiet,
The gentle breeze was present, 
The temperature was perfect,
The Classical for Studying was great.

Sure, the vacuum was raring to go,
There were dishes in the sink,
There was laundry to do,
There were weeds to be pulled,
There was mulch to be spread.

But, this just seemed like
The best place to be.
I am pretty sure there is a
Positive correlation 
Between lovely days,
Human productivity
So today I worked,
In a first world sort of way,
After a mile+ swim,
In the breeze,
With Pandora
And a pot of tea
On the porch.

Monday, July 8, 2019

#sol2019 Got Books

When you have books, you have tickets to worlds beyond your own. You can travel with the Little Blue Truck  through the city and into farms. You might spend moments with Dragons Who Love Tacos, even if they are extinct. You can learn to follow directions with Strega Nona !

When you have books, you can't wait to share them with your friends.

When you love books, you have to share them with those you love.

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

#sol19 Strong and Resilient

"It seems a bit early for fireworks," I thought as I looked out the window to determine from where the noise was coming; yet, before the thought was jelled, I realized that it was July 1 and indeed it was the season. 

I made my way onto the porch to catch the show; yet, before I was settled into my spot, my mind began to wander to the many seasons where "bombs bursting in air" marked the holiday.

There were years when I caught incredible, professional shows from on the crowded Capital Mall and years where I saw glimpses of backyard shows before, after, or perhaps even on the holiday.

There were years when neighbors put on illicit shows in the days before or after when we hoped our house would remain intact and years when we our own little sparklers lit up the backyard. 

There were happy years at the beach and quiet years when it was Macy's show on TV. There was the sad 4th when I sat in my attic and cried. 

It's clearly not a "one day and gone away" holiday! The lights and sounds do seem to be a reminder that we, as individuals, and we, as a nation, are strong, powerful, and resilient.

"And the rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there."