It is the second day of winter, it is cold with a bitter wind, it is raining.I have enough of this already. I was planning on shopping today but can't see the logic of that. Life should be opening up for us now here in Australia, the numbers of people in hospital or locked down with the virus are very small, hardly any new cases, so we can go to cafes or to the BEACH (really? In this weather?) so we should be grateful. But because of the contrariness of life it is also the beginning of the snow season. So time to snuggle down, find some soothing music and let the time pass is my thought, or maybe become a cave bear.
On the whole life is going on in a way I can cope with. It has been nearly twelve weeks since our lives changed. The first few weeks were really hard but somewhere along the line most of us probably felt we could live with the changes, well I did anyway. When you are an older widow you are mostly alone anyway. So I have been working on the cat mats which are going to the RSPCA. A cat mat is used for transition, it is placed in the cat's box when it comes into the Shelter, then when the cat is rehomed it goes into the carry basket, then to the new home. The cat looks around and everything is strange.. but wait a minute, what is that smell? It is my MAT. So the cat settles down, well that is the theory.
I wish there was a cat mat equivalent for us in our loss and grief moments. I wish someone had given me a warm rug with a warm hug when Ray died and said "This will bring you comfort" but that doesn't happen does it? On the 11th of June it will be 9 years since Ray lived here. On the 19th of September it will be 8 years since he died. I guess those two days will always have significance for me. I don't dwell on them, my life has moved on from there but on a day like today I remember. But truthfully I also remember that life was not good the last three years of Ray's life and so a lot of my memories of him are as an invalid rather than the strong man he was through the early part of our lives together.
I'd turn the television on but it is all doom and gloom, we might have the virus under control but much of the world has not. The news is focussed on bad news not good. Seeing the riots in the USA makes me aware that by comparison my life is good, peaceful, stable. Seeing people sleeping rough on the streets of our cities makes me glad I have a roof over my head, seeing people caught in the never ending droughts in Africa reminds me I have a roof over my head and food in my cupboards. I am so blessed and here I am feeling sorry for myself. I need to be thankful for what I have.
It is my birthday on Thursday. I know I have a present coming from Broken Hill as Trev rang to tell me it probably wouldn't arrive on time but it was coming. He said it was an odd shape and the kind lady at the Post Office took it apart and rewrapped it. Seems like he has that talent from me, I never could wrap a parcel without it looking like a football was inside. I had one present come last week, two lovely scarves from my man friend in Armidale, it snows there so he knows about the need for a warm scarf. We talk a lot on the phone now, which is good for both of us. We have been friends for many years. It is a friendship that we both need in our "twilight years". Lol. Or that is what I tell him.
The rest of the family are well. Shirley is doing far more in the Aged Care facility than her duties as a Chaplain but that suits her temperament. Like me she likes to keep busy. She has some stories to tell. Working in a facility which is for Dementia patients and people with mental health problems is hard but full of interesting situations as well. She finds it intense at times I know. My family down south I don't hear from much but the grandkids should be allowed to come up to their mother Pamela for the next school holidays in July. I hope so because she has not seen them since the end of January. This Covid-19 has split families apart, in some cases the closing of the state borders has disadvantaged a lot of people.
When I was a young woman I loved winter, it was quieter than summer. In summer with three children the days were long and busy. In times when we lived near the beach it was sand through the house, swimming after school, always erratic meal times. Often Ray would be away camping with his job, me at home trying to be mother and father. As the kids grew and we moved back here it was taking them to sport, Scouts and dropping them off at various activities. I welcomed winter as a less stressful time when we were at home together more and I could enjoy their company. Now I am alone all that has changed.
So whereto from now? I wish I had a crystal ball or a road map to the future. I wish I had a magic wand and could whisk away all our problems and bring about world peace. I think sometimes the hard times are what teaches us to appreciate the good times. In the meantime if you are a praying person pray for us all, if you believe in some other form of seeking goodwill do that. We need a LOT more love in the world. We need people who act with thoughtfulness and selflessness. It is a big ask I know. But we, who have come through so much can at least show some compassion for others. Just my thoughts for today. God bless.