These past, I cannot even tell you, how many weeks – four, nine – almost thirteen – have been extraordinary. On Facebook, I saw a post where someone mentioned they were bored during the quarantine and shelter-in-place order. I don’t have a full-time job that has been transitioned to work from home so my daily life is spent at home. What I have realized is how much I appreciate my shelter. My TO DO lists, which I make daily, now include taking walks, reading books, calling friends, working on puzzles, writing, and taking professional classes online. These are things I used to do when I got around to it; when I completed the TO DO lists that included running errands, going places, and buying stuff.
I have learned a lot about myself during this time. I love my space. I love my home. I don’t need to constantly run errands to keep busy and productive. I have a full life. I spend so much of my time worrying that I am not being productive and I should probably get a job and get busy. I have realized that I am busy – I need to embrace my OCD list-making self and let it go.
As we approach the time when we will “re-open” I feel a sense of dismay. I love being home with Jim and each of us doing our own thing and then doing things together. Honestly, I don’t miss going out to eat, seeing friends in the store, mani-pedis and mindless spending of money for stuff. It’s been calming to be home and be on my time. I wonder if, when we can go and do, will I want to go and do.
This is the season of Lent. Again this year, I gave up access to social media. I was bold this year and gave up Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Last year I rationalized that Twitter was a news feed and that Instagram was just a board for friends and myself to post real images. After a year of it, I realized that all three are just social media. I chuckle every time a news outlet reports a story involving a Tweet. It’s NOT news, it is someone’s limited opinion. Last year without access to social media, I read. I read and I read and I read. Here is a list of the books I read in 40 days:
- The Silent Wife by Kerry Fisher
- Neighborly by Ellie Monago [one of the dumbest books I have ever read!]
- Breathing Lessons by Anne Tyler
- Turtles all the Way Down by John Green
- Surprise Me by Sophia Kinsella
- The Paris Effect by K.S.R. Burns
- The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena
- The Seventh Most Important Thing by Shelley Pearsall
- Turn Right at Machu Picchu by Mark Adams
- Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris
- The Late Show by Michael Connelly
- An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
- Dress your Family in Corduroy and Denim by David Sedaris
As you can see I have a wide and varied taste in books. I will read mostly whatever I can find to read. I do most of my reading on my Kindle so I can read in the dark and not damage my eyes. I am looking forward to reading this year. I am starting with Upstairs at the White House by J.B. West.
A Lenten Prayer: God of goodness and mercy, Hear my prayer as I begin this Lenten journey with you. Let me honest with myself as I look into my heart and soul, noticing the times I turn away from you. Guide me as I humbly seek to repent and return to your love. May humility guide my efforts to be reconciled with you and live forever in your abundant grace. Transform me this Lent, heavenly Father. Give me the strength to commit myself to grow closer to you each day. Amen.
March 11, 2019
Yesterday we closed on our home of over twenty years. It was a great day. I am not sad – I have such great memories of our time there. But, more significant, I find that I am excited about what is next and I am almost sixty! We purchased eleven acres and a pond in Greensboro, Georgia, to be nearer to Eva and baby boy Pound due in June. We could not be more excited about building a new, downsized home and being near Eva as she grows up. I raised two boys. I am not sure I could have raised a girl, but I am confident I can help raise Eva well. A grandchild is proof positive that your parenting skills were okay. Well, a grandchild like Eva. Her mom and dad are incredible parents; we don’t know how they do it, but they do. She is just plain adorable, even when she’s not on her best behavior.
Click here to read more about our move and how wonderful it was to get rid of stuff you don’t need anymore and probably didn’t need in the first place!
Now we are at the Lake – where it all began for us more than 35 years ago. We love it here. It has been our home three times, so far. First, when we moved from Louisiana – pregnant with no job, no money. It was heaven. Second, when we sold our house in Overlook and could not find the right “new”house. Again, heaven. The boys were 5th and 7th grade. We lived here a year. Now, we are back. It’s a different house. The one built in 1930 was burned to the ground by an arsonist in 1999. Jim and Jep rebuilt it – it took four years. During that time we had to forgo vacations along with luxuries and frivolous purchases. Many times I got angry about it. Anger and worry are just a waste of time. Here we are twenty years later living at the lake again and loving it. It is peaceful, it is open, it is private and it is home. Thank you Lake for being here for us, again.
March 2, 2019
Today is October 12….Columbus Day….the day we celebrate the discovery of our geography, the geography that proved the earth was round and not flat. Today I am totally flat. Notwithstanding the fact that I have had to be flat on my back for the past two weeks, I am totally emotionally flat. This morning, at 6:58 a.m. I read a text from a dear friend that was the link to the obituary of her husband of forty years. Scott was our friend. The story of how we met Scott and Jan, his wife, is one we tell often, really often. I cannot think of two people more unlike us but we have been close friends for the past ten years. We’ve biked together – that is how we met. We’ve traveled together. We’ve visited in each other’s homes. We exchanged birthday cards. We sent funny texts. We got along because we value each other as people. We didn’t talk politics or religion but we recognized a Higher Power’s presence in everything we did.
We saw Scott this past July and enjoyed a LONG bike ride on the Little Miami Trail. It was an interesting day – another encounter for the story books. Scott came alone. Jan had a prior family commitment. I was surprised and even nervous. Scott has been battling mental health issues, specifically depression, for as long as we’ve known him and longer. That being said…it did not define him to us. He was just a funny, quirky, healthy friend who loved to ride bicycles with us, was loyal to his family, and always saw the good in everyone. Jan let on, every now and then, about his health, but never confined Scott because of it. She mentioned last winter that he was undergoing a treatment that “was the last hope.” We were all hopeful and in July it appeared to be successful. I am no expert but I am guessing that is the problem with treating mental health issues.
Now a dear friend is gone. I am so incredibly sad.
October 12, 2018