There are probably not that many of us who have dodged the strife and stress of the past two years. We can go to our place of worship and pray for those we know that have been afflicted by COVID-19, and for family members who have lost a loved one. We can give positive thoughts that those who closed their businesses, forfeited their homes or lost their jobs in this time of trial will recover. Most of all, we can struggle to understand those who took their own lives.
The saving grace, as always, is that we can gather our strength to deal with all the death, destruction and loss, not just locally but globally. “To trust in the force that moves the universe is faith. Faith isn't blind, it's visionary. Faith is believing that the universe is on our side, and that the universe knows what it's doing.” – Unknown
I decided to battle my pandemic pounds by adhering to a daily regimen of 40 minutes of fast walking on a nearby running track, chosen because I plan to eventually add some running to the regimen. When the road to the track was closed due to ever-present road work, I came around from the back, parked on the good road and added steps by walking to the running track. When it was raining, I got a hat. When the trucks were in the way of the good road as well, I parked on a nearby driveway because no one was up as early as me. These were all minor annoyances.
Then, there was a church member who took her own life. No one could have foreseen this — or could they? It takes a lot of intestinal fortitude to face all the “what could I have done” thoughts, but then I remembered a group of local chefs who put on a fundraiser in honor of Anthony Bourdain, celebrity chef, author and travel documentarian who took his own life in 2018. Proceeds went to The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, a voluntary health organization based in New York City, with a public policy office based in Washington, D.C., and local chapters in all 50 states in the U.S. The organization's stated mission is to "save lives and bring hope to those affected by suicide."
We can’t all do big things, but we all can do something. My church will be adding a stone bench in our memorial garden and I add our lost member to my daily prayers. I now go later on my daily walk and make a point of smiling and greeting all those I meet. I do that everywhere else I go. When I started giggling and playing with a bobblehead on a friend’s desk, he gave it to me. It makes me laugh every morning and I try to make others happy as well. #itsthelittlethings