Monday, March 30, 2020

Weird Covid days

March 30, 2020
Hello blog, I am on day who knows what of lockdown, shelter in place and getting a little stir crazy.  Taken the dog to the dog park and used doggy poo bags, empty, to open gates.  I gave  the handful of doggy mums and dads a wide berth.

Basically I have been inside now for a month.  I am retired so not needing to concern myself with things I have no control over anyway!  I have spent my time reading books - on Audible.  CB Strike novels by Robert Galbraith aka JK Rowling - highly recommend!!   Doing so meet ups on Zoom.  Cleaning.  But other than that am stuck in the house.  I do online grocery shopping which I pick up at the allotted time slot.  However, the time slots are now  sometimes a four day wait so I alternate two stores.  I was able to get most of what I need this way.  However, this week just about everything is unavailable for pick up or is out of stock.  This is starting to get dire.  Trump, I know because I saw his lips move and say the words, promised us the supply chain would not dry up.  But supplies without employees to move them are redundant.  My family laughed at me when I said we need a vegetable garden planting.

I just miss that spur of the moment feeling of   ‘I will pop out to the store.’

Strange how ‘unskilled’ workers are now our best hope to keep the basic infrastructure going.  Karma  Donald - now we need those people double quick!

It’s also dire when our leaders of governments become sick and have to isolate.  Royalty too.  The mind boggles how things could change in a heartbeat.

So on the one hand many places shut down and the roads are almost empty compared to normal.   But, there again, the garden nursery across the road seems to be going great guns with cars rolling up.  Not sure that is an ‘essential service’ but hey ho!  Rules don’t seem to mean much.  The road workers widening the road or putting in drainage are working hard.  Must be a joy for them to be working and not have cars everywhere!

The grands have begun their online virtual school work this week.  My husband is working from home and said he got tons of business this week so far.  Weird.  Maybe this is a sign of things to come with remote school work and remote  home office.  So much for companies who seemed to think  it couldn’t be done.  Where there is a will there is a way - my mother always said.

Ladder of Hope

COVID has brought society to its knees with its untested influence.   Nobody is safe. It can happen to anyone.    We are stopped in our tracks and forced to reassess how we got here.  Could we have done something to stop it?  Can it ever be fixed?  Will life ever be the same? Suddenly the pictures of third world disasters are now us.  Our complacent comfortable lives laid bare and vulnerable.  We are not invincible.

When our son vanished In 1996 time stood still for our family.  We began living life with one foot in the present and one foot firmly in the past. Life in limbo, ambiguous loss (Dr. Pauline Boss) are descriptions for families left behind to cope with the unresolved loss of a loved one.   Not knowing is the worst. No finality. The future looking vague.  Loss, confusion, dismay. Wondering, how could this happen? Learning to put the jigsaw of life back together, leaving large blank holes where once there was a vital vibrant important  piece.

I think we are already on a ladder of hope to repair our lives - it’s a process.  Some things can be fixed but some cannot.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Dismal Days

It’s a very tenuous thread between feeling okay and feeling devastated.  One minute feeling good, holding  it together, feeling strong, useful, worthwhile and hopeful and making a difference.  The next feeling totally crestfallen, desolate & isolated. Pulling oneself up by the boot straps again.  It will be okay a one day...

Monday, March 16, 2020


Then, suddenly
just like that
all the wheeling, dealing,
grasping, manipulations
of daily life
as we knew it
is reduced
to a heap of
by a rampant global virus

while we were not looking

Saturday, March 7, 2020


The things left unsaid
Words cannot do justice
Emotions lived within
Efforts gone unnoticed 
Days lost anguish
Years of life missed out on
Anxiety and anger simmering
Loss tangled with the living
The struggles of desperation
Silent cries for justice
Highs of hope and lows of desolation
A hand outstretched to hold
Fading light when fears loom large
Forever left wondering
Did we do enough?
Feelings of  despondency
Light shines in
Raise up 
Nobody could have done more
Don’t give up 
Stronger than imagined
Grasp the outstretched hand 
The light is here

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Romjul or Twixtmas

Maybe I am the only person alive that has never heard of Romjul but I am really excited I have now discovered it.  

Living in other cultures over the years I have tried to maintain my childhood Christmas experience and traditions.  But since we live in America now, we don't have any Boxing Day.  I know!!!  They just don't know what they are missing.  But, we roll with it because... 'when in Rome' yada yada yada.  I worked for a school district for 15 years so I had the time off anyway. I was a lucky one and retired last Christmas.  I still struggle with the idea of business as normal, on December 26, - for most people including immediate family members, which is a bit dismal. 

I have been pondering and ruminating on this lack of prolonged Christmas.  I remember when I was young we entered a time-warp where nothing existed outside the house we were in, usually at my Nana's in Gloucester.  We took a coach (no it did not have horses) and often we were stuck in snow drifts or lost traction on icy hills.  My mother and I watching through a foggy window, alarmed, as the men got off the bus to throw gravel under the wheels.  My brother vomiting in a bag as the bus slithered backwards.  I digress.

I am excited to have found a formal name for the period between Christmas and New Year now thanks to trusty Norsemen.  

Romjul.  I love this written by Alf Pr√łysen

"One should have been four years old in Romjula when the Christmas lights were shining all day long and the world was a house with four walls, where the very bliss was a grandmothers lap."

Here is a link to the Metro article where I discovered this exciting information.

I will now always remember I am justifiably in Romjul and have a perfectly good excuse to do absolutely nothing all day and every day....after all Ancestry dna said I am teensy-weensy part Scandinavian.  

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Christmas Reflections 2019

Christmas gifts have been purchased, wrapped and unwrapped. Food has been purchased cooked and eaten. Children big and small have spent the day engrossed in new and interesting endeavors. Now I sit quietly contemplating precious decorations which adorn the tree which were made by my own children and grandchildren. A small glittery bell made from construction paper contains a photo of Damien when he was about 7. Who knew that this small creation would be one of the things I treasure so much? This is his work, he cut and pasted and put glitter on it and glued the picture in place. His little hands busily making something for the Christmas tree and proudly presenting to us, his parents. How could I have known the value of such a small thing he made. But now many things he did have become treasures. His school notebooks, his poetry scribbled in his own hand as his thoughts were penned to paper. Moments in his life so random but so special and of course we have treasured our memories.

Getting through Christmas for me is to throw myself into the tasks needing to be addressed; to create a day for the family to enjoy, staying busy, without bringing everyone down on this day of all days. Nobody has forgotten our loss and deserve to revel in this moment and create new memories around the space where Damien should be - with us - in our lives. Living with loss means we prioritize our needs and manage expectations which are adjusted and re-adjusted as the occasion dictates.  It is not black & white, easy vs hard.  It is living with loss and learning how to cope around it.
It’s easier said than done and took many years of baffled confusion to reach some understanding of this other life, one foot in the present and one foot firmly in the past. It is an ongoing struggle which you can choose to lose yourself in or try to make the best of it and hold yourself and what is left of your family together, for them, just for Christmas at least.