“Let not your heart be troubled…”

The climate these days is so contentious. I am having a hard time finding balance. It is like everywhere you turn, someone is angry with someone else, or something else. And I am clinging to sanity as much as I can. I know others who are in my same situation. Others who have had it worse. A friend I met through a group I belong to, suddenly lost her husband last night to cancer. I mean, it was fast. And she is reeling. One of my dear friends has a mom who is the same age, or even older than my mom by a year or two, who fell yesterday. She is now fighting for her very life. And when I think of that, I don’t have it so bad. 

Today, as most of the world is doing, I am searching for peace. For calm. For quiet. For order. For faith and sanity, in amongst the chaos and anger. And I sat and watched mom totally snooze through the Senate hearings today. I was talking back to the screen. LOL. And then I realized, “How can I affect this?” I can’t. Not one bit. Oh I can tweet or post or what-have-you, but I cannot change what will happen in Washington, DC today. The only way I can affect the national government is to vote this November. It is the only way I can affect our state and local governments and assure things are run in a constitutional, legal, way. I can send letters to my legislators, and I can make my thoughts known. And I do all those things, and I plan to vote (EVERY VOTE IS IMPORTANT IN EVERY ELECTION. STOP BEING A COUCH POTATO!! Or assuming someone else will vote and/or take care of it. It is our responsibility to ensure our country, and our world, is a functional and safe place for our children and our grandchildren). But today, today I need to just step back and turn it off. So now, we are watching cooking! Ha-Ha! There is even controversy in what you choose to eat!!! How would I know it would all be about Gluten-free cooking???? And still, mom snoozes. And so I go to my fall-back (mom woke up) and turn on the Game Show Network! Wheel of Fortune! Yay! LOL!

I may even find an iPhone case like the one above, to remind myself to search continually in the world for this. And it is funny, because as I have gotten older, I have found quiet and solitude a pleasant way to live. I have friends I gab with, but I have no need to gab…until I do. LOL. And one of the most epic ways I have discovered to find peace and serenity, is to be quiet. When dealing with my mom, no response or a quiet one, work wonders. There was an article recently about Alzheimer’s and Dementia patients and how they are struggling for sense in their world, which has turned upside down. How they cannot make sense of using a toothbrush, let alone Senate Judicial Hearings. And if I refuse to follow pathways we somehow developed when I was a child, but insist on the pathway of peace and harmony, life seems better. I cannot teach my mom how to make her toothbrush work. Yesterday I walked into her bathroom and saw that she had put her body cleansing spray cap on her toothbrush head (it is an electric brush and sits on a charger) to “keep it clean,” she informed me. And that she had retrieved a second toothbrush from the cupboard below, encased in its travel case, and laid it amongst her make up. I asked her what that was for, and she said she likes keeping her toothbrush clean. Then she said, “Well, I guess I’m not going anywhere soon, so we can put it away.” Every day, it is something different and it is so interesting to see what her brain is telling her. Because each day, each moment, is a different journey. And confrontation and explanation is not working with her. Explaining that it is raining and chilly to someone who put on heeled sandals without socks, and capris PJs, with a heavy robe, is not worth the breath.

Soon we will be ensconced in snow. I know many people are afraid of winter weather. But I love winter. The peace and quiet of a snow-filled landscape just fills my heart with serenity and calm. The silence of falling snow is incredible. I was raised in Southern California and growing up sun-drenched and then discovering states with weather ignited a joy in me I find hard to describe. I used to tease my father-in-law, who was a life-long Coloradan, about the wonderful sound of scrunching snow as we walked on it. He had taken it for granted, hearing it his entire life. But after meeting me, and seeing my joy in it, he never forgot and would chuckle when he heard the sound thereafter. And I find myself longing for the peace and serenity in winter. And as we approach the weather inherent in winter, I also look at mom, slowly descending into her own winter. And I am working at being a better daughter and care giver…reaching out to hug more often, or to smile more often. It is becoming a quieter journey, and I think for two women, that is quite something!



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