It was a blessing for me to have 3 of my grandchildren here for a week. Now that they are gone back home it leaves me with a quiet but empty house.
I just saw a commercial about a grandma who is saying goodbye to her family only to feel lonely in her own house. It made me wonder, why is it always grandmas who are portrayed as alone and lonely.
It is times like this, when I am tired and the day or week is almost over that I feel more alone then at any other time.
I am grateful that I have friends. But friends have their own families to go home to. They can’t always think about me.
Lord Jesus, please, don’t leave me or forsake me.
From time to time the women that I work with leave me scratching my head in wonder. I can say something so simple or kind and they can over react and misunderstand me to where everything that I say is wrong. This just happened today and I’m not even working!
I understand men and women are different. I was married to a woman for 40 years. But as a newly single man I find the idea of meeting and falling in love and learning to love another woman is a task that would make Hercules shudder.
This is why whenever I feel like I’m on the fence about remarriage something will happen to remind me why, for me, it’s not worth it. This is why I am happy being single.
I was thinking about the future today. My future to be exact. Looking at the list of things that need done, mainly to the house I live in. And as I pondered and planned it occurred to me; if I didn’t have to save up to do maintenance and repairs to my house I would have plenty of money to buy clothes or furniture or furnishings or to take trips. So doing what I have to do robs me of the means to do what I would love to do.
I have mentioned before how after Kathy died I looked to sell my home and move into a smaller apartment in the area. Until I looked at the prices. That’s why I shifted my focus from downsizing to keeping up the place where I currently live.
If I had unlimited resources I could do both what I’m required to do and what I would enjoy doing. But I don’t. And like economy dictates, it’s making the best use of limited resources.
My mortgage will be paid off in 2027. Then I will not have to worry about that. But can my house wait that long? Will I be as healthy then as I am now? Life is a gamble sometimes. I get impatient waiting. But waiting seems to be what I am good at now.
Have you ever just wondered, what if I don’t have enough? Enough talent, or enough love, or enough wisdom, or even enough money. Some call this the fear of scarcity. Or the fear of not having enough. For example, and I have done this, you need something and you have the money to buy it but you put it off because you want to make sure you have enough at the end of the month. That’s what I mean by being fearful of not having enough.
The word frugal means economical, prudent, sparing, or meager. My friend is frugal. He has resources but he is always looking for a bargain. Then there is the word covetous which means greedy, desirous, or having a great desire to possess something, especially if it belongs to someone else. These two words may seem opposite of each other, but in some respects they are very similar.
One way to free ourselves from this fear is to take control of your resources. Don’t let fear dictate your actions. Have a plan that isn’t focused on stuff. The other element is to give. Giving seems to break the power of greed and fear. Giving to someone or something that doesn’t benefit you directly.
I find for myself that just studying this and writing about it seems to dispel the worry and anxiety of scarcity in my mind.
I continue to experience the same things over and over again. Mostly emotional issues. Like today. I have an unexpected and unplanned free day. So what to do? I feel paralyzed with indecision.
One thing that I keep dealing with is money. For so many years I lived hand to mouth with very little wiggle room. So when I think what to do my first excuse is, I can’t afford it. Or, I better wait until later to make sure my bills are all paid. Or some variation on that theme.
I like to think that I am being frugal. But I think that I am making excuses for my laziness or fearfulness over money.
My needs are met, my needs are small. I have enough. I could always use more. Why then does this fear of not having enough continue to plague my mind?
Some people have regrets about the things they have done in life. Mistakes they have made, people they have hurt, etc. We all have things in our lives we wish we hadn’t said or done.
But a lot of people have regrets over what they feel they should have done and didn’t do. School, spouse, career, vacation, etc. They feel emotional pain over a life they feel they should have lived. They have regret over things they never did.
I can help you here. First, eliminate the “should have” from your thinking. You did what you did and said what you said. You cannot go back and do it over. What is done is done. Second, if you have caused pain and it is in your power to make restitution, do it. If not, forget it. Emotional pain that is vague and lingering is not legitimate and needs to be sent far away.
The real question for all of us is, what will you do next? Not what should I do, but what will I do? Then learn to love who you are and how you live and what you say.
I have been poor and oppressed and depressed for so long that it feels strange to be none of the above today. During the past 10 years my life was rocked to the core. Financial collapse, my wife getting very ill, Kathy ultimately died, and on and on. But today the worst of grief is behind me, my bills are all paid and I have money in the bank, and my biggest financial decisions are not food or gas, but what on my needs list should I tackle first.
I would not wish anyone to go through what I have endured. Except that in some bizarre way it has made me stronger and less prone to panic over problems. Even now, as this month started out slow in my work it ended with a bang. That’s one reason that I am just puttering around my house this morning. Laundry, floors, etc. I’m tired.
One issue that I was thinking about today is that I need to spend money on something that will last a long time rather than on a whim or a fad that may bring pleasure for a short time but will sit in the corner collecting dust in time. Also, that health is more important than stuff, so that investing in health and fitness is higher priority than investing in art or furniture. I can’t just go out buy everything I want so I have to plan.
That all for now. I’m enjoying just one more cup of coffee while the last load of laundry finishes washing. Then it’s off to the grocery store to stock up my pantry.
One final thought. I thought about buying myself a birthday cake and having it decorated for myself. Is that too weird or strange? No one else will even see it unless I take a picture and post it on Facebook!
Quite often in my work my passengers say some profound things without realizing it. Like today. My passenger was moaning and complaining about the many times in life when she felt like people should have known she needed help and didn’t help her. I didn’t hear a lot of what else she said. I was thinking, am I like that?
I find myself inwardly complaining when I hear of people doing things that I want to do. Or when I find that I never seem to be able to do the things that I feel like I want to do. And then today it hit me; if I really wanted to do something I would do it. Maybe the real fact is I say I want to do something but maybe I really don’t.
So whether it’s camping or eating out or traveling maybe I need to adjust my desires toward doing things that I really would enjoy. I go hiking and I enjoy that. I find myself up against the awful “should do” barricade.
I’m thinking that if I have been pondering something for a long time and haven’t done it maybe I need to set that idea aside. It’s not being lazy to avoid doing things that bring you no pleasure.
I am grateful for friends who I can bounce these ideas off of.
An issue that I can’t seem to put behind me or bury is my house. Oh it’s my house, I have been paying the mortgage on it. But when we bought this place and how we decorated it, that is not mine. I always deferred to my wife, Kathy, on all of these matters.
Now that Kathy is gone her house is still here. It looks a lot like it has since we bought it. It still looks a lot like Kathy wanted it. I have changed what I could. Anything still left to do will cost money. It took over 20 years to get this house to look like it does. It feels like it will take 20 years to undo everything and make it mine.
Usually when I am working or I am busy I don’t notice how much this house bugs me. It’s days like today. No work, business and chores are done. I’m relaxing at home, and the feeling of distaste seeps in again.
It’s not about the money anymore. It’s the memories. Memories that may grow sweeter in time, but memories of what is not here now overwhelm me from time to time.
Fortunately this day will end and tomorrow will be a new day. But one thing I feel is that if this is what happens when a marriage ends, I never want to go through this again.
According to some experts there are four things we all need in life to live a happy and fulfilled life. I will list them and let you ponder what it all means.
- You need something to do.
- You need someone to love.
- You need something or someone to believe in.
- You need something to hope for.
That’s it. Very simple and yet very profound.