Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “practice/practise.” Use it any way you’d like. Have fun!
One of the blessings to come out of this “lockdown/quarantine/social distancing” has been the evolution of my spiritual practice. Lacking personal interaction, I seem to be more and more seeking solace in spirit.
My dad once said “there’s no such thing as an atheist during an earthquake.” He said it during a 6.5 quake that shook the Imperial Valley back in the late 60’s. It stuck with me.
My spiritual practice is a hodgepodge which I won’t get into here but it’s taken on new breadth and scope in the past couple of months. I have finally found my meditation mojo and the quieting of the mind is an awesome thing, even when it’s only 10 minutes.
I once attended a Paul McCartney concert. When he played “Let It Be” 100,000 lighters clicked and the utter silence from the crowd was deafening. There was nothing but the stage, the song, and, perhaps, the voice of God.
“I do not fear a man who has practiced 10,000 kicks. I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.”
Let It Be ~The Beatles
Til next time ~Keep your face covered and your heart full ~JPP
What Day Is It Anyway? — Coping with Covid 4/16/20
What day is it? Grocery day! Who would have thought that the big adventure for my week/month would be a trip to the grocer. We try to go to town every two weeks for supplies. One trip we utilize our “curbside pickup” store and pick up our on-line grocery order. No telling what they will have been able to fill for us until we get home but hey that’s the adventure part. Today was our trip to the Health Food Coop. We go early during “immunocompromised” hours. It’s a small store and there generally aren’t more than 3 people when we go which is awesome. Today was no exception.
They’ve made some changes to the store layout and everybody is masked. It was actually a rather empowering experience. For once I didn’t feel panicky or handicapped.
We managed to get the frozen blueberries and the particular bangers that we prefer. Also casein free not-cheese and the extremely dark (92%) chocolate that Superhubs likes. Picked up some fresh bananas and apples, a couple of sweet potatoes and …. oooooh fresh organic strawberries! Also managed a 4-pack of toilet paper and an extra liquid hand soap. We deliberately passed on a few items like cabbage, packaged salads and mushrooms just because they didn’t look “good.” No soft margarine, onion powder or potato flakes but my situation isn’t dire and I can probably get those from the grocery pickup in a week or two.
Then we went by our drive-thru pharmacy, picked up my prescriptions and a bottle of isopropyl alcohol that the clerk was kind enough to snag off the shelf for me and pass through the pickup window.
We did the drive through food stop at our local Starbucks. First time in MONTHS we’ve had something that has not been prepared in our kitchen. Let me tell you a coffee and bagel never tasted so good.
So, today’s been really good. Warmer weather coming should enable us to take down our RV skirting this weekend which I’m looking forward to.
Oooh Child — The Fire Stairsteps
Til next time ~Keep your face masked and your pantry full ~JPP
Today is “tax day” in the US. That day when federal and state income tax returns, estimated payments, IRA contributions are all due. Except that this year they’re … not. All tax related deadlines have been postponed to July 15. But I am not concerned. I’m practicing “life as normal as possible” so I will go ahead and file today, electronically. We have a monthly visit to the health food coop planned for tomorrow, hoping to score the fresh needs for this month.
I’ve purchased and/or made several cloth face masks which I wear every time I go out of my house. I’m taking a bit of gaff for it from our local residents but, honestly, I don’t give a rat’s patootie about their opinion. I’m dealing with a spring flare right now which has hit me HARD! Not just the cough, fatigue and muscle pain either. It’s broken out in my skin … again. Sarcoidosis/lupus skin outbreaks are painful, and this time they have elected to attack the bottoms of my toes! “Burning Feet Syndrome” is not as funny as it sounds. The neuropathy pain is not pins and needles but the actual sensation of burning. I totally empathize with the Salem Witches!
Life goes on, as we all adjust to our new “normal”s. Stay Safe.
Room on Fire — Stevie Nicks
Til next time ~Keep your head down and your pantry full ~JPP
It feels like war, this pandemic. Like stories my grandmother told me of the great depression. Of course it’s not that bad but my reaction seems to be the same. I have convinced myself that if I don’t have something positive to say, I shouldn’t say anything and that has led to a lot of silence. I honestly don’t have any real opinions about what’s going on around me. I don’t want to contribute to the hysteria, the mass misinformation, or the blatant denial that I see everywhere. Life is not the picture of lock-down joy I’d like to believe, but rather a Monet, fuzzy and indistinct but beautiful all the same.
So much has changed in the past year that it’s hard to get a grip on where it’s all going. I float along in the vessel of my dreams, trying to adapt to the new flow, but I am stuck in a kind of paralysis. My creativity seems to have closed up rather like the shops and restaurants I never visited but now miss terribly. I cannot write, so I read. Whole books in a few hours, and oh thank goodness for my Kindle app. I clean, I sanitize, I cook, I craft. Crafting at the moment has been limited to making a variety of cloth facial masks.
I find that I am not alone in this suspended animation. Friends who are painters find they cannot paint, so they garden. Musicians cannot compose so they play Warcraft. Career women who cannot work are creating new casseroles, accountant’s without ledgers to balance have taken up tarot reading. It’s not a writer’s block that I’m feeling, it’s the trauma of a world gone sideways. I know that this will pass, that the stores will reopen, I’ll go back to work, creativity will flow again, for all of us. But for now I’ll try to remember “the dream is like a river, ever changing as it flows, and the dreamer’s just a vessel that must follow where it goes.”
OK so I officially don’t know what day it is anymore. I seem to have lost a couple of days. Well not really true but kind of, it’s Monday, I think. I suffered a fatigue collapse yesterday (yes that’s a real thing). It happens to people with various types of chronic fatigue when for one reason or another your entire system just collapses, you can’t think, you can barely move, sometimes can’t eat or even speak.
One of the blessings of this quarantine is that I have reconnected with my mad kitchen skills. When I related to friends and family the fact that we’ve not stepped foot inside a traditional grocery store in two months, the main question I got was “what do you eat?” Oats for breakfast with protein powder and frozen berries, lunch; canned salmon, low carb wrap, canned olives and vegetable soup from freeze dried vegetable mix; dinner; tempeh with red cream sauce (cream sauce with freeze dried tomato powder) and frozen vegetables, snacks have been banana chips and dried apricots (both unsweetened) with various nut butters. Yep, you can eat healthy from the pantry. Of course, you can also binge eat all out of proportion …. but that’s a topic for another day.
It has taken me over an hour to write this so …. I’m going to go drink a cup of tea and maybe take a nap. 😉
I’m Tired — Madeline Kahn
All The Tired Horses – Bob Dylan
Til next time ~Keep your head down and your pantry full ~JPP
Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “deep.” Use it any way you’d like. Have fun!
“The woods are lovely, dark and deep but I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep” ~Robert Frost
Deep and dark have always equated to trouble in my lexicon. As a child, caught in an undertow, pulled out into deep water, I watched the shore slip away. I struggled to stay afloat as I fought against panic and waves. Until he was there taking me in strong arms, hooking my little arms around his neck issuing a command to “hold on” as he swam back toward the shore. Then standing in hip deep water, pulling me around to his chest and carrying me back to solid ground. The next day, he taught me to body surf and what the different surf warning flags meant. Just like always, Daddy was there. Until the day he wasn’t.
What day is it anyway? Hmmmm I’m thinking Friday? I only know this because it’s “Castle” night. Yep, we watch dvds of the series “Castle” on Friday nights and, hey I never miss Nathan Fillion. It’s quiet here, very quiet, no people out walking, no carts driving by, no snow plows. It’s almost eerie and kind of weird but we’re just taking it all in.
My life is full of blessings even though the snow is messing with my plans, leaving me guessing I find my self honestly confessing I miss the sun’s warmth caressing though Summer heat can be oppressing and humidity is too depressing So I’ll cloak myself in winter’s dressing warm and snug to contemplate my blessings
Awoke to several inches of snow this morning when a spring squall moved in. A few more inches since then. It’s been a quiet day, roads and sidewalks are slick with melting then refreezing run off. My exercise today has consisted of an indoor walking video, and shoveling the front walk twice plus a short walk to the garbage cans. Good enough.
I am reminded today that one of my goals has been to acknowledge the blessings this pandemic panic has brought my way. I gaze out my window at the snow covered trees, bushes and roads and contemplate the blessing of a warm snuggly home. I was able to pick up groceries yesterday, have ordered more on-line and have a stocked pantry to see me through until those orders arrive. Blessings, oh so many, many blessings fill my world every day, it is humbling to contemplate. Blessings to you my friends.
“I am not anti-social, I’m anti-idiot” ~ Sherlock Holmes
In a sudden irrational act of antimicrobial, antihistimine inspired social distancing, I caught myself waving to one of my soon to be co-workers from my window this morning. He didn’t wave back, then I remembered, I have tinted windows, you know those shiny mirror things that block the view so I can see out but no one can see in. Drat! That’s what you get from inhaling too much sanitizer! Wonder if that could be considered huffing?
We ventured out into the wilds of semi-suburban Rapid City to our local Health Food Coop today. It wasn’t half bad. Special “immune compromised” hours and a very small store with fairly high prices led to an almost serene atmosphere. No toilet paper, no wipes, no rolled oats, but filled most of the rest of my list. Got in, got out, got home, just in time for a Spring Squall complete with snow. Ahhhh Black Hills in the Spring. How y’all holding up?
Til next time ~ Keep your head down and your pantry full ~JP
Well it was bound to happen and it did. I finally had a system melt down. I’ve kept the stress and anxiety bottled up, dealt with the pollen and weather changes, the drippy sinuses and the coughing. Apparently my body and mind have had enough and yesterday I just threw in the proverbial towel. I spent the major portion of 24 hours asleep. I sat in the recliner and snoozed most of the day, ate only sparingly, and was in bed by 6:00 pm. I feel better today but still somewhat drained. I am reluctant to take the immune suppression drugs I normally take for this since they basically squash my immune system and I’m not sure that’s such a good thing right now.
We got out for a good walk early this morning before the clouds, wind and … people. I swear if I get out of this crisis without a full-blown case of agoraphobia I’ll be doing really well. It’s already nuts as I’m washing and sanitizing my hands so much they’ve dried out to the point of cracking and bleeding. OK, OK, it’s also partly caused by Sjogren’s but c’mon I can blame it on Covid Prevention Paranoia, symptoms include excessive washing and sanitizing, fear of anything not clearly (and personally) sterilized, man I need an autoclave! Oh well, as they say:
“This too shall pass it may pass like a kidney stone but it will pass.”