Thoughts on Grieving and 9/11

I saw a news story about 9/11 where they still, after 16 years, read the names and ring the bell for the people who died on that day. Women with tear-stained faces talking about how it still hurts. People who have kept the tragedy of that day fresh and alive and current in their lives.

As someone who has grieved the loss of someone very dear to my heart I watched these poor people. And then I wondered, why is this still an open wound in their hearts?

Grief is intense and confusing and it rocks you to your core. But you come out on the other side a new and different person. Grief is a journey, not a destination. If after many years you are still on the ragged edge of grief may I say that you are stuck in your grief. You can get past this, you must get through this.

You are not honoring the dead person by reliving their death over and over and over again. The Catholics do this with Christ. In their faith He is  perpetually on the cross, never risen from the dead. In this they and you actually do a great disservice to the dead person. You become like those who have no hope and so they are always sad and sorrowful over someone’s death.

I have tried to say this as kindly as I can. If you need help, help is available. Life is meant to be lived, not suffered through. Weeping may endure for the night, but joy comes in the morning. It is time for the survivors of 9/11 to open their eyes and see that the sun has risen.

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This And That

It is a rainy chilly morning where I live today. I planned to get an early start and do some hiking on a nearby rails to trails path. But with rain outside and flash flood watches for this area all day I decided to stay in mostly today. I am a fair weather hiker and camper.

I have tried over the years to eat better. To eat real food not processed factory food. To cook from scratch. To buy organic. And in doing so I end up not eating enough or eating snacks or otherwise eating badly. So at Sam’s Club yesterday I bought some heat and serve meals to stock in my freezer. I started to read the nutrition labels but stopped. I wand fast and filling no matter what’s inside. This is hard for me to do, but I am tired of being hungry and still gaining weight.

I from time to time still find things that I used to enjoy doing when Kathy was alive that I remember but no longer want to do. The county fair is on right now, but I won’t be going. This is one specific thing that I used to enjoy but can’t do anymore. I am finding it is easier to find things to say no to, but harder to find things to say yes to, especially if they are new and unfamiliar to me.

I had a nice dinner after work last night. It was okay food and so so service. But I left satisfied. Now the hardest thing about eating out by myself is that I am in a room full of people and no  one to talk to. I stopped going to the gym because of that. I don’t feel like I am a freak, just that it would be nice to have someone to chat with. It’s because I am there for a period of time, not like the store, where I am busy and then leave.

That about clears out all of the cobwebs in my mind this morning. Have a good day!

Paid To Post?

I received an email today from WordPress to show me how to charge money or raise money from my blog. Do people really do that? I guess I shouldn’t be so naive.I remember being surprised to find out that people were earning money for content they put on You Tube. That was about the time YT went from regular people posting video of their lives to professional content producers and media outlets.

I cannot see a time when I would charge someone just to read my blog. Maybe that explains why some people fret over writer’s block or posting great content.

When you read these words, what you see is what you get. From my heart and through my mind to yours. That is why I do not strive to add pics or video to my blog. Your imagination is a much better graphic inspirer than any GIF’s I can find online.

I you want to read what I write, welcome aboard. You cannot buy anything here, and you cannot even leave a tip in the jar. But if what I have written helps you, then I am paid in full.

Why I Write

I have written about this before. But it is an ongoing things that keeps coming up. So here I go again.

Why do I write on this blog? I do it just to express my thoughts, kind of like a journal. I don’t share everything here, but things suitable for public consumption. I am not writing to impress anyone. I am not writing a book to sell, unlike BBB. I am just writing like any writer does.

So if you want to read my words, help yourself. If you want to comment, that is fine. I will never publish beyond this space what is written here. I will never profit from what I write here. If I thought I could be a real writer I would pursue that elsewhere. Not here.

So that is why I write. I don’t care if it’s perfect, or polished, or publishable. I have words that need to come out and this is one place where that happens. So if that’s not good enough for you, don’t waste your time on my page. Read all of the other wannabees who think they are writers. That’s all for this episode of why I write on WordPress.

Yesterday Is Gone

“It’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”

These are the words of Lewis Carroll in Alice in Wonderland. But these words could easily be the story of my new life.

I have written several times about my journey through grief and how it has fundamentally changed me. This has left me feeling out of sorts, feeling like I am crazy, and feeling like I don’t fit in anymore.

The times this hits me hardest is when I try to relate to people I used to know or to do things I used to do. I look the same on the outside, but inside I feel like a stranger in a strange land. This is why the above quote speaks so clearly to me. Trying to go back to a place and time is a lesson in frustration.

This is why estranged families or other relationships don’t always get back together. Time has moved on, and we all have changed. The me and you from the past don’t exist anymore. The circumstances of our closeness is gone. This is why I have written, you can’t go home once you have left. That segment of time and space is gone forever.

Maybe my life would be easier if I were younger. But I have a lifetime of memories and experiences that don’t fit any more. I find I am just too tired to start over. If I met a nice lady could I even muster up the strength to love her?

I know it’s the end of the week and I am tired. But these issues don’t go away after a good night’s sleep or a good meal.

Turning A Page

I passed a milestone today. For the first time in my adult life I went to work because I wanted to, not because I had to. My early Social Security retirement kicked in today. I could not live on what SS gives me, so I will need to continue working. But it gives me a sense of freedom from wage slavery since I could liquidate my material holdings and then live on what I get. Easily.

I have a million things that need to be done and more that I want to get done. So I will do nothing until the way forward becomes clearer.

What To Do?

I have been following the hurricane and rain in Houston. My son’s family are in Katy. Hurricane, then rain, then flooding, then tornadoes. And as I communicate with my son and watch the news from Houston it dawns on me; what would I do in a catastrophic event like they are having there?

Frankly, after all I have gone through in the past few years, death and grinding poverty and sickness, I don’t know if I could handle a natural disaster like a hurricane. I am too old and too tired to start over. I cm too tired to even think about rebuilding. I don’t even know what is important to take if I had to bug out real fast.

I really need help right now.

The Conundrum File

Time to look in the conundrum file and see what’s there.

Should I buy frozen meals ready to cook and eat and fill my freezer with them? Or should I take that same money and use it to go out to eat on those evenings when I am too tired to cook?

Should I buy yard work tools to keep up on the landscape around my house? Or should I hire someone to do the basic work? The tools, like mowers and trimmers, will eventually pay for themselves. But Hiring someone could be seen as an investment also.

Many things I used to enjoy doing I now find bothersome. Places that I go I find old and stale. Will doing new things with new people and going to new places really be of any value, or am I kidding myself?

There are things I do or don’t do for fear of the consequences. How can I judge what is right and wrong as it pertains to my choices? Is guilt and fear a valuable tool to judge by?

Do I want to meet someone and develop a romantic relationship with them because I need that or is it because of habit? I was married all of my adult life. I enjoy my singleness now. But am I missing something by not having a woman to share things with?

That’s enough for now. If answers to my questions seem easy to you well they are not so clear to me.

Don’t Think Too Highly Of Yourself

Ever notice how some pretty people are snobs. Because they are attractive and people want their attention they feel no need to be nice to people less pretty than they are. They almost feel like they are better because they are prettier.

Cities can be that way too. Where I live it is a desirable place to live and retire to. It has been for generations. So housing prices here are very high because it is a desirable place to live. Wages are historically low but the cost of living is high.

I guess my point is, it takes more than a pretty face or a pleasant climate to make a good person or town. Like sci-fi movies with a lot of special effects but a weak story line, success depends on turnover or a fresh batch of admirers.

So pretty people, your looks may get you attention, but if you have the personality of a fish, you will never have a good long term relationship to build your life on.

The Secrets To A Long Life

Do you want to live a long time? What do you have to do or not do for that to happen? You think you know the answer to this, but do you?

Scientists who study people have compiled a list of things that tend to help us live long and even happy lives. What is interesting is what doesn’t matter. As long as you don’t live downwind from a nuclear accident site, where you live means little to how long you live and how well you live. Abiding by most popular diet fads also counts for little. Being a naturally happy and gregarious person is not required. And your genes do not matter near as much as your lifestyle.

So what does the science say? Here is their list, beginning with the least important and moving to the most important things.

  1. Clean air. Nice to have, but not very important.
  2. Hypertension under control.
  3. Losing weight.
  4. Exercise.
  5. Rehabing after a cardiac event, including diet and exercise.
  6. Flu vaccine. Really?
  7. Quit drinking.

The final three though are far and away the most important things, outweighing all the others combined. Here we go.

8. Quit smoking. Far more important than quitting drinking.

9. Close relationships. People who know you and will help you in the most intimate and personal ways.

10. Social integration. How well and how often you interact with the people around you who are not close friends or family. Do you chat and make eye contact with strangers? Do you greet people personally and warmly? Are you involved with people in the social arena?

In a society where lonliness is empdemic and people are left to live in isolation, social and personal interaction is a prescription for good health and long life. You need to talk to someone besides your doctor. And video chat is not a substitute.

It is not good for the man to be alone is how the Lord saw it in the very beginning. He was right. Science has confirmed His wisdom.