December thoughts….

I was hoping to open with… “We’re in the final stretch!” errr, meaning, we had the Pandemic COVID virus under control or something like that. Truth is, we don’t. Yet. I am hopeful that the new vaccines will eradicate a lot of the anxiety and worry and deaths that COVID-19 has caused. So, the “hoax” virus is estimated in total could be close 500,000 deaths! One half a million lives lost due to complications of COVID-19. No Hoax there folks! So, young, middle or old. There is no rhyme or reason to this virus. Since Thanksgiving, the CDC, WHO, President Elect, have all pleaded with our nation to not “mingle”. Do not gather in large groups, do not throw big house parties, or meet up with a crowd of people to celebrate with cocktails. I know, some break the rules. I know teens and college kids are invinsible. They are now ordered to virtual learning and home schooling and stay in orders per state. What a combination! Who can juggle that? Emotionally? Finacially. The world had to shut down. Did we have any other choice? Since March, COVID has devastated hundreds of thousands of people. Loss of job, 50% loss of sales, business. Who can truly survive? They certainly can’t thrive this winter. The liquor stores will. Congrats! Liquor was immediately deemed essential to survive the pandemic. If I see one more meme or TikTok video with day drinking Mom’s…not a good look Mama’s. AA is going to be super busy next year for sure. White Claw (spiked seltzer) are Billionaires now. I don’t get it! Churches were shut down! You could not go in and pray or sing. I’m still baffled and frightened by our President ignoring or not addressing this nation over the last 10 months! He mocked Masks and he and his family all had COVID. It’s a tragedy, truly. I was so happy when my church figured it out and our pastor held service outside every perfect Sunday all summer long in our vehicles. It saved my heart and soul. Praying for those less fortunate, volunteering and donating meals and clothing to the ones that need it so badly now. Prayer and hope, that is what church taught me. Everyone needs to help each other and take care of each other. So, when the local casino opened BEFORE churches were approved to open, well, I started to see the world differently. Priorities, humanity, homelessness, hungry families, unemployment…it’s A LOT. I see it everyday. I found immense gratitude, each day for my warm home and nourishing food. The least I can do is give. Donations, food, an ear to listen, baking, cooking, volunteering. Healing comes from the simple act of giving back. No matter how small the gesture is. It is appreciated and can make someone feel loved. I see hardworking people with two jobs not making the rent. Hungry children at our schools, domestic abuse and child abuse rise as people fall silently. A pandemic. A scary, unstable time in our world. It runs a vicious, deadly course. It does not discriminate or choose who will live or die. We live in America. We have the ability to heal the sick, just not all of them. The only saving grace is the world statistics. Less than 1% of the population will die from COVID-19. I pray for the less than 1%. I know what grief tastes and feels like. I can’t imagine, saying goodbye on an IPAD to your parent or grandparent. Emotionally, the medical healthcare workers are at risk 24/7. You rarely hear ANY of them complain. They are robots, numb and overworked and underpaid. Yet, they sacrifice everything to save lives. I’m in awe of all of you, truly.

I haven’t seen my daughter since 2019. It will be a year soon. I haven’t seen my Granddaughter in 18 months. I miss her terribly. She now resides in Greece. We gave her a beautiful wedding last year. Love is beautiful. She had an elegant reception with 100 people who love her. Joy and happiness were in abundance. I was thankful and overjoyed for her. Now! She is expecting a baby in May. They live abroad. I realized this Thanksgiving was the first time ever that I did not have my children with us. It’s hard. I get it! I haven’t hugged my daughter in almost a year. We spend hours on Face time. (Thank GOD for that miracle) and talk many times a day. OnThanksgiving morning. She cooked her entire meal while I was on Face time with her. Lessons learned. This is truly what Thanksgiving means. To be with the ones you love always. I felt close to her, proud of her and grateful to be her Mama. I am certainly missing her near me, next to me. I made a turkey for 2 this year. It was the first holiday in over 40 years that we were alone. IT was certainly….. Different. Not terrible. It’s just the reality of 2020 right now. I have learned to accept and make something GOOD out of it. I delivered the leftovers to our nephew who lives alone. I’m sure he enjoyed a hot meal. It’s the love we share. The love we are able to give without expectations. It’s the little things that still matter. A Christmas tree with sparkly lights. I awake everyday and smile. Some people have no tree, no presents, no home this year. It’s picking a child off the Angel tree at church and buying a special toy for them. It’s baking and delivering food with Love. It’s not hard. It’s not a fortune to cook a meal. It is important to spread that love and ask that everyone just do something. If you buy someone a hot tea and donut, or a happy meal or a sandwich, a pie…it doesn’t matter what it is. It matters that you care enough to help and give back. As our president elect so beautifully said. Our nation is in need of Hope again. Healing again. Let’s get there together.

I have taken advantage of all the extra stay at home time to do many projects. I took up photography and expanded my gardens with beautiful flowers and shrubs. I took little trips to photograph bridges, barns and flowers. I escaped the news and incessant political venom and hate. I, instead, watched the season ofspring roll into a beautiful summer. I noticed each bloom, bulb, leaf, birds nests and all that nature has to show and give to us. I was introduced to exotic birds and sweet sounds of nature flowing and buzzing. If or when I felt smothered, I would drive out to the east end of Long Island and gather shells and rocks to paint and hide. Gratitude, just kept blooming inside my soul. I finally finished a project or read book that I just kept putting off. I wrote my story and hope someday it helps someone. My Mama left me a check once. It was written to herself for “Simple Abundance”. Thank you Mom for reminding me. Lately, my most fun and exciting projects is that I pretend to be an artist. I make crafts and repurpose stuff and relish in the simplicity of creativity and imagination. I redecorated with the things I already have and organized closets, basement, etc. and then I donated my “stuff”. We all can clean out the attic and basement and garage and donate things we don’t use or need. One man’s junk is another’s treasure. I donated half of all my Christmas decorations to a family that had a house fire. I just felt that the children would appreciate a touch of home for the holidays. Again, it’s the little things. I think I may sound a bit like the Coca Cola song. I’d like to teach the world to sing, in perfect harmony. Harmony is not such a bad thing. I miss music outside, concerts, hugging and laughing with no mask. I zoom weekly with my support groups, it helps so much. I yearn to read and learn about humanity and how Kindness is spreading. I also acknowledge that many are suffering. Depression, addiction, alcoholism, suicide all on the rise because of life, and our current circumstances. Many have no tools, no therapy, no insurance, no contact, no love. I urge anyone suffering in silence to find online support (if possible). The 12 step recovery meetings are free. They work. Just make the call. Toll free Hotlines are still working. Reach out and seek help. Everyone deserves to NOT Suffer. I have also had to face and accept that our own family members are suffering and dealing with all of the above. They are hurting. They are sick and addicted. They are angry and emotionless. To be honest, I had to accept and let them go, gently. They don’t want any help because they are unwell. I cried many times for them, for me, and accepting where they are right now. I cried for us.I miss “us” the most. I told them all how thankful I am that they are all alive and we didn’t lose anyone to COVID. I recall my youngest brother on our one and only Zoom call in March. He said, he was sick and tired of the BS and hoax and honestly, he said.. I think we should just all get it and get it over with. I was in shock, really? He was angry at the Pandemic Hoax and forced to shelter in. After all, it was fucking up his social life and his ability to earn money, blah blah blah. I wasn’t being honest with myself or with him. For years, I watched addiction change someone completely and what was once fun is now non existent. No wonder they had no ability to love and support me over the last few years. It cut deep and I let it torture me in my darkest days. You shouldn’t have to beg for support or love. Today, I just have to remember.. I can’t control, fix or save anyone. I can only live and control how I live and who I choose to spend my time with. Lessons learned and some are harsh.

I know who I am. Where my heart is. I figured out what heals me and propels me to keep on. It doesn’t appear or happen overnight. Grief takes work and patience. Time is a great healer…it is true. I am guilty of wanting to share it with the ones I love. I wanted to make a difference in their lives. I wanted to share my story and how I recovered. I tried many times. Years later, I finally had to let go and move on. Painful still. What I do know is you must find your tribe! Seek out support and love. What I found along the way is Faith and Gratitude. Finding your own inner peace. Priceless. Planting your own seeds and taking the time to love yourself in whatever state of being you are in currently. I still chase waterfalls and flower gardens and oceans and shells and rocks. I know what matters. I try and be a loving, kind, human. I’m a work in progress, finding my path and my purpose here. My sister calls it, “God’s work”. Perhaps she is right. I am so grateful and thankful for her love & support. I am constantly trying to be understanding and supportive. Sometimes, that is all someone needs, just to be heard. I learned, some lessons can’t be taught. I do know a few things. I chose not to suffer anymore.

As we head into 2021, I am filled with hope. I am excited about a new life entering our world and hearts. She will be loved beyond the moon and the stars. I see my cup is full, brimming over with limitless possibilities! Just take it all one day at a time.

Love, & Peace, stay safe!