We are all trying to navigate through this very difficult period of history. Our concerns are many.
The food cost and availability.
The disruption of the supply chain.
The divisiveness that is destroying our family cohesiveness and community.
The inability of children and young adults to receive the education heretofore available.
The infringement on personal freedoms and liberties.
The critical health issues.
The inability to know what the future holds.
I believe we've all, to one extent or another, been operating under conditions which are causing a basic depression of our mental, emotional and physical well-being.
How do you handle the opinions of others, whether they be friends, family or the occasional stranger, when they (sometimes vehemently) disagree with your own?
What are your thoughts regarding the future of our society, our country, our world?
What anti-stress mechanisms do you use to combat this ever-present feeling of unease and concern?
Please share your intuitions, concerns, hopes, expectations and beliefs. As little or as much as you wish.
Faith is the only thing that ultimately keeps me going. Enjoying and working with my animals, and keeping my hands busy with chores and crafts definitely help, but they wouldn't be enough without faith. Faith that a God who loves us all is in control of the world, although He gives humans free choice, and faith in His Word, which tells me that what we are experiencing (in broad terms) was predicted long ago, and also tells me what is to come.
Michelle - I know you are a woman of very strong faith. You also put your head and hands to the best of use in loving and caring for your animals and creating beautiful products. Thanks for your comment and for stating your beliefs so succinctly.
I'm like Michelle. My faith helps me survive these times and not only survive them but to thrive, knowing that this is not the end of the story and what likes ahead (eternity) is far better than anything going on here. I know times are tough and will continue to be tough (and even get tougher) but I know Who holds the future in His hands and He has never let me down or abandoned me. So I trust Him in whatever happens, knowing He knows what is best. I also do what I can to protect myself for the future. Storing up a bit of food, making sure I take care of my health, vitamins and the like, and trying to find things to laugh at, even if it is just our silly corgi puppy :)
I am concerned about the education of our children. My 5 year old grandson, in kindergarten, gets pulled out of school every time a classmate he has been in close contact with tests positive for the virus. Although he continues to test negative, he still has to do the quarantine the school mandates. Thankfully he is not falling behind but I'm sure there are kids that are. That worries me.
I take a walk w/Nelly & say my morning prayers, thanking God for another day & asking him to please watch over those I care about & love. I'll come home & while having my morning coffee, spend about an hour on my laptop catching up on blogs and bookmarking things to help plan our future camping trips & food to go along with them. Then I go to my sewing room where I'm trying to finish a bunch of UFOs before I start another project. Sometimes I clean a room or two..... Try to stay away from any network news either from TV or internet.
I’m thankful (in a strange way) to see this post. It’s been a difficult couple of years and I don’t feel like things will get much easier. I think we can only do the best we can. We continue to go to work. We make time for family. We do our best to budget and store up a little extra. Given that, we worry a lot. We are both nearing 60 and we don’t see retirement as an option at this point. It’s a worry to know how we’ll make it - our healthcare costs are increasing as well as everything else. It’s startling to see empty shelves in the stores and yet we recognize that we are not immune to difficulties either personally or as a country. We try to hold to our faith and just keep putting one foot in front of the other.
I'm fortunate to have a personality that thrives on being alone; which helps counteract the fact that I have 3 serious health issues that make getting sick dangerous. My parents don't have health problems and need more social interactions so our compromise is they tell me when doing something risky, I mark 10 days on the calendar and avoid in-person visits.
When the news starts getting me down, I switch off and avoid reading it until I've reestablished my equilibrium.
First time commenter, long time reader. I think we are all very aware that things are not ever going back to normal. In fact, they will get worse. One just needs to read scripture to see that. However, there are such beautiful promises the Lord has made to those who trust in Him. Things such as peace, protection and the Holy Spirit to guide us are only a few of the gifts our Saviour has promised those who love and serve Him. I don't know how anyone could ever survive this world physically, emotionally or spiritually without faith in Jesus Christ. As for those who disagree with us, that's ok. I strive to find common ground with them and remember everyone is doing the best they can with what they have. We are all children of a loving God and need to treat each other as such.
betty - Children (no matter the age) being pulled out of school and parents needing to be in charge of working with them with their online work has already proven to not be working. I'm also concerned that depriving children from the socialization they need with people other than their own family is detrimental to their growth. But that's only my opinion.
DFW - We all need to find a routine that works for us and it sounds as though you've found that. I think the isolation and inability to socialize has been especially hard on extroverts who are people who thrive and become energized by association with others.
Charlene in Virginia - My husband and I frequently talk about what we would do if we were just starting out now as, obviously, so many of the younger generations are. The prices of everything from building materials to food to medical care are causing people (of all ages) to make choices of where to spend their money when they are only desiring the necessities of life. If we can keep our health, it's a good plan to keep your faith and "just keep putting one foot in front of the other."
tpals - Sounds as though you've found the best way for you to work through this current period. Finding a way to get oneself back into a comfortable place is important. Maintaining one's equilibrium is so much better than going off the deep edge!
Melanie - If only all people could/would follow your sentiment that we need to remember everyone is doing the best they can with what they have. No other human or group should be in a position to hold power over others. Thanks for commenting!
After 20 months of it - I'm struggling. I keep working. My Dad has cancer and negotiating cancer diagnosis and treatment when the hospitals are full is frightening. As of yesterday, there was 2 beds in our nine county region.
The politician in me is angry -- this isn't a political issue -- this is a public health crisis that others have turned it political. People are dying and or have lasting health affects because they don't know who to trust -- or who to believe.
I unplug by reading (trashy romance novels - no thinking just reading), crocheting and staring at the lake (when it's not frozen) and walking -- lots of walking in silence .. just got to get away and clear the mind.
Marie - I agree with all you say . . . and are doing. For months now I've not been able to read or listen to an audio book that contains the least bit of ugliness, angst or violence in it. Light fluff (some biographies) is what offers an escape for me. I'm so sorry about your dad's medical issue. What a terrible frustration.
I am of the opinion that in and around all this noise lately, there will be an abundance of love and joy in our future. Before my feet hit the floor every morning, I thank our Heavenly Father for our many blessings, and to help guide those that need Him to Him. I then set out on my day, and refuse to listen to anything negative, or fear based. Some of the events and news are designed to keep us fearful and worrying… it’s almost as though there is a force feeding on the fear instilled in some folks these days. Worrying and fretting about things, fixes none of them. Start finding things that make us laugh! Laughter is the healing energy that we need everyday! God bless us all!
wyomingheart - Yes, yes, yes! Appreciation of every little thing we have in our daily lives works wonders, too. That (and laughter!) has been proven to combat negativity and enable us to provide, even in a small way, an uplifting effect for others.
Interesting post and responses. I usually don’t read all the responses of others before responding, but I did this time. While I don’t think your post pointed to spiritual coping mechanisms specifically, it is interesting how many of your readers commented in terms of their spiritual practices.
My first impressions were to wonder how history will describe this time. I wish I was younger and could see how history treats this event. I guess I didn’t personalize this request for how I cope because current events haven’t really impacted me directly. At 74 - I am retired and lead a pretty quiet life. I have not been terribly impacted by the isolations - with the one exception of early in the pandemic - not seeing my family. Now with the advent of vaccines and meds to help manage some cases of Covid - my family contacts have returned. But bad things have happened in my own life - and my method for coping has been to put my head down and plow on one step at a time to get to the “other end” where ever that it.
Possibly I did not respond regarding my spiritual coping mechanisms because I start from a different place than some of your readers. I have a spiritual mindset rather than a religious practice. It is an awareness of the amazing world we live in both large and infinitesimal (and that includes Covid as it changes from a “killer virus” at first and evolves into a virus that does not kill its host quite so much as it once did. Amazing evolution, truly, when you think about it.) And that there is a Creator’s hand in all of it - not one of anger or punishment, but one for the diversity and evolution of nature. Humans are evolving as well as we respond to this viral creation more successfully with every passing month. There should be hope in that human response. So my 'spiritual response' to Covid is - Wow, look at what nature has produced and what we are learning/doing to manage it.
I guess my view is a “luxury” position since I have lost no one the this viral creation. I have not struggled to see my children educated, I have not lost income because my job disappeared. I truly do realize there is great suffering happening now for many. But there was great suffering before. Flu still kills despite our efforts to manage that. We just aren’t as aware of it because it wasn’t/isn't plastered all over the news everyday like Covid. Cancer still kills. It is more insidious because it start within us rather than passed from person to person. There was great suffering happening before this viral outbreak, and there will be great suffering after we get back to a “new normal.”
But I choose to focus on the big picture for now - Nature and the Creator is wondrous, ingenious, complex, beautiful and .... yes, sometime dangerous!
And this is how I cope.
Retired Knitter - A well written and thought through response. And I thank you for taking the time to share it. We are all different and I find it so interesting (and educating) to hear all my readers' responses. I do appreciate each one and yours, too.
Answering your questions, one at a time: when someone voices opinions I don't agree with, I change the subject. If that doesn't work and they continue, I just end the conversation nicely and move on. I know that arguing with them does nothing, as people are firmly in their own corners these days--and maybe we always have been, but just kept our opinions to ourselves in the past? We have many good friends who hold very different views from ours, and I value the friendships more than I do trying to change their minds. I continue to live my life as the best person I can be, and let the rest slide by me.
As far as the future of our society, well, I am dismayed at the discourtesy and coarseness of people's behavior today, of course. It's so opposite of how I grew up and how I prefer people to be. But then I remember my Dad thought the country was going to H*** in a handbasket back in the late 60's and 70's, and try to maintain a longer perspective. Dire warnings about the fate of our country have sounded since its inception and will likely continue. I do not like the way our society is tending over the past 5 years, but this is a new generation coming along and I think perhaps my generation--the boomers--has had their time in the sun and it's time to move over. Whether we will like it is another question, LOL.
I keep busy, doing the things I love, staying in touch with those I love, enjoying the beautiful place I live and this beautiful world. Peace comes from within, I have always been told, and I believe that, just as happiness comes from within. I'm a strong advocate of changing what I can, and what I can't, just not worrying about. It's not easy to be this way in these days but it's my goal. Other than that, a cup of tea on a tray with pretty china, a good book, and reading blogs like yours provide a sense of peace and well-being for me. I disagree politically with half my family, but we don't discuss politics, and love each other no matter. And that love sustains me too.
Granny Sue - Simply a beautifully written comment to my inquiry. Thank you for taking the time to write it all out. Truly, I think I'm going to be rereading it often. And I'll concentrate on remembering your outlook and appreciation of life.
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