I am not okay – but I will be.

A few weeks ago, I posted about Randall in This is Us and his emotional collapse as life began to pile up on him. It was, in fact, exactly one month ago today – February 24, 2020. Randall was not okay. You can read my other post here.

Today, I have realized, that I am not okay either.

This was the picture I used for the former post …. today it is picture at the top of this post.


That little kitten who saw himself as a warrior tiger; big, brave, and strong……..yeah, that’s not me. I’m the hot mess,

I rarely sleep past 4 a.m. these days, regardless of what time I go to bed. This morning it was 3 a.m. when I awoke and after 15 or 20 minutes just got up so I wouldn’t disturb Glenn.

Yesterday, my one day off after working the weekend, I did nothing. Well, not exactly true, I played Nintendo Switch most of the day with my children and my granddaughter. Outwardly, I am sure nothing seemed wrong, but inwardly I was crumbling.

My husband prepared veggies etc., before he left to go to work. Me, I forgot to put the roast in the oven. So we ate frozen pizza.

Today I tried to remember the name of the ministry that I donate to every month to support someone out there on the streets working with the homeless and downtrodden, and I couldn’t remember the name of the ministry. I’ve been giving to them for a few years.

I cry at the drop of a hat, with no warning and no apparent trigger. I feel so helpless.

These are scary days.

There is much unknown. Many possibilities and no real guarantees.

The biggest heartache for me right now is that I can’t be with all my kids. It’s been nothing short of agonizing. They are in their homes, some with their own little ones, and we can’t be together. In times like this, I just want us all to be together. I feel like everything would be okay if we could just be together. Under one roof. In one place. Together.

I can’t see my parents. My mom is 93 and my dad is only home a. week or two from a 3-4 week hospital stay where he suffered a heart attack, a septic knee, a bowel blockage, kidney stones, and received stents in his heart. Thank God he made it home before this madness hit.

Yesterday I fired their housekeeper…………over the phone.

My concern for their well-being can not be understated, or overestimated.. I was angry. Angry at her for being there when we are ALL being told to stay home. Angry at the situation and worried because I know they don’t grasp how serious this is. And angry because I haven’t seen them in almost two weeks because I won’t put them at risk, yet there she was. And when they all started arguing with me that everything would be fine and it wasn’t a problem, I told them clearlyl that this was neither a debate, nor was it at all negotiable and if she showed up there again, I would be waiting at the door and/or would send the police!

I was crying and I was shaking, but I wasn’t begging or pleading, I was angry, or maybe it was just feeling desperate.

Or maybe I was just scared.

Needless to say, either way, the housekeeper is history.

I don’t know what to do. I can’t fix this, I can’t stop this, and I have no idea how we will all ultimately be affected by this. Already, I can’t sleep, I don’t care if I eat, I can’t think, and all I really want to do is to get the hell out of Dodge…….but I have nowhere to go.

I am thankful for my job, but it’s the last place I want to be.

My husband works at Walmart. There are a lot of people at Walmart, people who, as has been reported, have travelled outside of Canada, and returned to work or shop at the store. My husband has a trach, a direct opening to his airway, and is 68 years old. We desperately need the money, but at what cost? I don’t know….. It worries me……greatly.

Honestly, I’m not worried about getting the virus as much as I am about the society we live in if things turn really bad. It’s already nuts in many ways. The panic, the hoarding, the desperation….those that worry about their survival only. Shortages, closing, economic disaster…..there is a lot to be concerned about.

I want to be……………..together. With my family. With my kids. I just want us all to all be together.

And I can’t.

The turmoil is great, the anxiety is escalating, the “what-if’s” overwhelm me, and the solutions elude me.

I just wish we were together.

I have realized, I am not okay.

Today I woke up feeling overwhelmed. I haven’t felt that for a v-e-r-y long time.

And then I read this…

I actually closed the book and opened it again to make sure that the words I was seeing were the actual words on the page………it addressed all that had me tied up in knots and I knew this was exactly what I needed to hear.

Glenn, my kids, my parents…..I was carrying the weight of their wellbeing on my shoulders…….well, at least in my mind, and heavy in my heart. But I am limited, I have no control over what is taking place.

So I have to release them all to the only One who loves them as much as I do. I know, in reality, He loves them even more…..but, to be honest, I can’t even fathom that. Some things cannot be understood, they have to be revealed.

This too is not something I can make happen, nor am I expected to. Instead, the answer lies not in striving and struggling, but in rest. That place of rest, where the storm can rage all around me, but I am at peace.

Peace that doesn’t depend on the circumstances but rather exists in spite of the circumstances.

Peter walked on water, until he focused on the storm instead of the One that called him out to walk on raging waves.

There isn’t a “happily ever after” ending to this post. It’s not like TV where by the end of the show, all has been resolved and calm and order have been restored. This is a moment by moment pursuit. Some moments will hit the mark, some will fail dismally. But it’s okay…. It’s a journey. A pursuit of peace and rest.

I’ve never needed it more than I do right now.

How I am keeping myself safe….

It’s not easy, or popular, being someone who thinks outside the box and runs the other way from the crowd. Oh that doesn’t mean I’m not concerned or that I’m not taking precautions, but I am not losing my mind and letting fear control me.

It is life as usual for me, because the precautions, apart from the shut-downs and isolations, are the common-sense precautions we should all be taking every single day.

  • I wash my hands
  • If I feel unwell, I don’t go out, if possible, especially not around my elderly parents, young children, or anywhere that isn’t necessary.
  • If I do have to go out, I minimize contact as much as possible.
  • I use essential oils to boost immunity.
  • I eat fermented foods, some fruits and lots of veggies.
  • I make and drink homemade bone broth, and take probiotics to improve gut health, thereby boosting my immunity.
  • I diffuse air purifying and immune boosting oils daily.

What I do NOT do:

  • Overload my body with toxic chemicals and carcinogens. I use natural, non-toxic environmentally friendly (remember, the environment?) cleaners, hand and face soaps, body washes etc.
  • Eat sugar! Sugar is one of the biggest enemies of a healthy immune system.
  • I drink lots of lemon water to help flush the toxins that are unavoidable or unintentional.

From the things I’ve read, the symptoms of the Corona Virus, are not extraordinary and MOST PEOPLE, experience symptoms that are even less than those of the flu and similar to a cold. Yes, there are those that are at a higher risk, and yes, there are deaths attributed to this virus, just like there are deaths every year from influenza. But businesses didn’t close, schools didn’t shut down, and there weren’t brawls in the department stores!

I have the utmost respect for those that have made a rational choice to isolate themselves or take whatever precautions they have deemed necessary and prudent. I feel sorry for those who sit wringing their hands in fear, compassion for those who are truly immune compromised and therefore at risk, and I despise those that have little to NO concern about their fellow man and are emptying the store shelves of everything they can get their hands on, or even worse, selling at exorbitant prices to those in need.

I fear for those small, and not so small, businesses and corporations that won’t survive this.

As with much of what I see touted as cures for anything, the solutions often cause bigger problems than the issue that they are supposed to fix.

You are free to do as you want, (except post nasty comments trashing my personal opinions…..I will delete/block you in a heartbeat) but be aware. Operate from concern if necessary, but don’t be controlled and consumed by fear. Did you know that stress is another significant enemy against a healthy immune system?

Germs of all kinds are unavoidable, even under the best circumstances. I believe we need to focus, at least as much, if not significantly more, of our effort on building our immune system so that we are strong and healthy, and not vulnerable to every germ and bug, Every day. All year.

Funny, I don’t see many carts filled with, or people fighting over, vitamins and fresh foods.

Here is recipe for an immunity boosting essential oil roller bottle blend:

Immunity Boosting Roller Blend

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Equipment

  • Good quality essential oils
  • Roller ball
  • Carrier oil

Ingredients
  

  • 6 drops Rosemary
  • 10 drops Frankincense
  • 6 drops Lemon
  • 2 drops Oregano
  • 10 drops Theives (Young Living), On Guard (Doterra) (or DIY blend)
  • Carrier oil (fractionated coconut, MCT, V6 etc.)

Instructions
 

  • Drop your oils in your roller bottle and fill with carrier oil of your choice.
  • Cap the bottle and enjoy. I usually apply 3-4 times per day.
  • I've also used it in a dropper bottle and added to my bath with Epsom salts.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Click this link for the original recipe and the properties of the selected oils.

Here is a video link highlighting Thieves cleaning liquid and it’s proven germ/bacteria killing results tested against other toxic cleaners, including bleach and lysol. The results are amazing, and all without cancer-causing, caustic, toxic fumes or chemicals. It is a little long, but time well spent.

While I am not posting this with the purpose of selling you something, I can get you Thieves if you want to try it. Mostly, I want you to know that I believe we are being sold a bill of goods when these harmful products are brought into our homes and applied to the surfaces at home and on our bodies, or inhaled…., and they don’t adequately kill the germs and bacteria we are trying to eliminate.

Here is another great video on how to use oils. Again, a specific brand is mentioned, but take away the information that you find useful. She gives a list of the top ten oils to have on hand…….a good place to start your collection.

Be well, and be kind…..to your body, and to your fellow man.

Friendships that weather the years…..

We moved from the metropolis of Niagara Falls to a small northern town, whose economy sources were logging, mining, and the railway. We only knew one couple, a couple I didn’t know very well.

We bought a log house outside of the town on ten acres, 2.5 hours from North Bay on Hwy 11. It was only a little over a six hour drive, but for many reasons, it was a whole other world.

We had three children at the time. Our oldest was eleven, our second was two and a half, and our youngest was nine months old. We were excited about the adventure!!

In those days, (gee, that makes me feel O-L-D) you dialed the last four digits of a phone number to call locally, we were on a party line with three other families (our ring was one long and one short) and everywhere outside of our Englehart 544 exchange was long distance. There were no phone plans at the time with free Canada-wide calling. I think it was cheaper between 8 pm and 7 am, and maybe on weekends, but otherwise it was long distance, and not cheap.

All of our close friends and family were left behind….some in the Ottawa area and some in Niagara…..no one nearby. I was young, I was a mom with littles, and I was lonely, evidenced by the atrocious phone bills.

Only going six hours and still in Ontario, I hadn’t anticipated the culture shock awaiting me. Life was different up there and people were distant. I think they were so used to having people like us move there for a Northern experience, but very few stayed. So they held you at arms-length, unwilling to invest until they were sure you were going to stay, which often took about ten years.

Winters were long and cold. Our first winter there, it snowed September 20 and the snow never left til Spring, which didn’t arrive until almost June. Food prices were high, gas prices were higher, and well, you already know about the phone situation.

But little by little, we began to make our way.

About a year or two in, we connected with another family through church. Their family was young, we had our faith in common, and they too had lost a baby boy who was stillborn, as was ours.

Mike and Glenn talked hunting and fishing…..and being a farmer, Mike tried to teach us to raise chickens. That’s a whole other story!!!!

Janet and I birthed and raised our babies, gardened, canned, cooked, sewed, made quilts, took on homeschooling, and took shopping trips to North Bay,

On one of those infamous trips, we went out for dinner and made the impromptu decision to attend an event at North Bay Arts Centre. It was perfect timing!!! Buddy Wassisname and the Other Fellers were performing and to this day, I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so hard!!! My stomach literally ached, tears rolled down my face, and I came perilously close to wetting myself!!!!! It was a night I will never forget!!! It must have been the stress we were under, and the release we both needed, because although I’ve seen and heard this act since, it has never made the impact that it did that night.

We spent 15 years up there. It’s hard to believe that we’ve been away for just as many years, having moved back near my hometown.

Over the years, our girls have maintained their friendships and we have attended weddings and showers. This past weekend, I travelled the same familiar roads for a baby shower to celebrate the impending birth of one of Mike and Janet’s newest grand babies, and to visit our children that still live in that area.

It was so soul-nourishing to reminisce together, sharing our incredibly precious memories and to laugh together once more.

In days past, we have shared our hopes and dreams, joys and sorrows. We’ve walked on life’s mountain tops and through the valleys. This weekend we were able to sit together and watch children and grandchildren (the feature picture for this post is Janet being read to by her granddaughter, Elizabeth) and be reminded of the faithfulness of God, even though things didn’t always turned out as we’d hoped.

Life takes us many different places. People come and go, seasons change, we grow and evolve,, and time and distance have been the hill that many friendships die on. But then there are those go on in spite of the obstacles and challenges that life imposes.

These friendships are gold, a precious gift, and to be treasured forever.