Sunday, February 28, 2021

About Time

I've been meaning to write a post since all this pandemic stuff hit the fan last March.  I could have gone on procrastinating until worldwide quarantine ends I'm sure, but I got a call today that reminded me that none of us gets unlimited time.

An old flame and I reconnected recently, and I've been feeling my way in the dark trying to figure out how this new relationship could work. The original split happened three decades ago. The old feelings are still there, but we have both lived a lifetime since then--including marriages and kids raised.

I've been puzzling over how to be friends with someone in the unique history we had, and in time I think we could figure it out. Except we don't know if we will get that time after all.

We all know time is not guaranteed to any of us. Unfortunately, the odds are now tipped against us with a dread diagnosis in play. I really hope this is wrong, but it is the kick I needed to start writing again. Because none of us might be here tomorrow. I will follow the advice of a colleague: Done is better than Perfect.

Today's blog title refers to the movie of the same title, starring Domhnall Gleeson, Rachel McAdams, and Bill Nighy.  Here is a link to the IMDB listing: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt02194499/

Below is my COVID-inspired Bucket List--with luck and love, I'll get to some of these soon:

  1. Ski the Alps (again)
  2. Spend time with my recently discovered birth family
  3. See my children launch into their adult lives
  4. Dance at my children's weddings
  5. Hold a grandchild
  6. Live in Europe for a while
  7. Live in Asia for a while
  8. Travel New Zealand and Australia
  9. Publish a book
  10. Hug my old flame

Monday, December 17, 2018

Seeking Holiday Joy


I can feel my usual holiday blues creeping up on me.  As I see all the cheery decorations around, with instead of reacting with optimism and delight, I feel stress | obligation | dread.  I am working on recognizing the joy that is out there as well.   

Here are things that put a smile on my face:

  • Red and white traffic lights:  sure, it sucks to sit in traffic, but when the road curves a little, the ribbon of headlights and taillights are actually pretty.  Especially when they are close together in bumber-to-bumper traffic in the dark on the way home.  I try to see that instead of the cars.
  • Audiobooks:  My monthly Audible subscription, or Libby for free depending on what is available.  While I listen to mind-expanding or learning books in the morning, I let myself relaz with fiction on the way home.  This helps me better appreciate the ribbon lights just mentioned.
  • Picturesque houses:  I don’t live in these, but I love looking at them when I happen to pass them.  Sharp peaked roofs, twinkling lights, exuberant holiday decor.
  • Good hot food: Dieting kills my joy, so I am giving myself a partial pass for this month.  I love to eat flavorful food full of spice and variety, different from the bland fare preferred by the rest of my family.
  •  Stylish Clothing:  Whether thrifted or brand new, fun clothing helps me enjoy my day a bit more
  • Theater: Whenever I can afford the tickets.  Time and money well spent.  There are so many options over the holidays, from expensive to free local school and church concerts.  A rousing chorus of carols lifts my spirits.
  • Quiet time: for reading, crafting
I hope you are all able to find some joy for yourselves as well, whatever form it takes.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Resolved

This is a promise to myself.  I will begin this year.

The first third of my life was all about the future.  While I was blessed in childhood with a loving family, and middle class means to access most dreams I might hope for, my focus was always on tomorrow.  School.  College.  Life.  Accomplish and acquire--skills, people, things.

The next third of my life was about RESPONSIBILITY.  Still all about the future, now both mine and my family's.  Supporting my children's dreams, fulfilling my own potential, and saving for retirement.

If I should be blessed with an equal third of what remains of my life, I am resolved that I shall LIVE NOW.  There have been unpleasant revelations the last few years.  Nothing entirely surprising.  The signs were all there for the more attentive or perspicuous to read.  And suddenly I wonder what the hell it has all been for?  If I am unhappy, why I am I still doing the same thing I've been doing all along?  What can I change?  And that is the key.  What can I change about myself and my life?  Because others cannot change, no matter how much they might want to please us.

Moving through the stages of grief:
  1. denial
  2. anger
  3. bargaining
  4. depression 
  5. acceptance

Hard acceptances this last year:
  • People are the way they are.  They are not going to change, and many in fact are not capable of change.
  • The division of labor will always be unequal.  Can I live with that?
  • Romantic fantasies are dead, were always false.  What is there instead?
  • Count up what is possible.  Is it enough?
  • What is the minimum you can accept to go on?  Can you live on half that?
  • How would it feel to put all those burdens down?
 Stay tuned.