I remember many years ago when my former husband was a fighter pilot in Viet Nam, he would say that every day is Wednesday. They bombed every day. It didn’t matter if it was Saturday or Sunday; every day was Wednesday. The comment reminds me of my life today. This Wednesday routine won’t always be the case but it is now in the present and, in reality, that is all I can work in. Saturday and Sunday’s are more of the same as Wednesday. Working from home, self-employed, I can go walk on any day, go to the pharmacy any day, take out food any day, shop at Trader Joe’s any day etc. The only must do week days are doctor appointments. Here is Los Angeles, there are no cultural, sporting events, dining in, open gyms, no pedicures, no hair salons, no bars, weddings, family gatherings of no more than 10 spaced according to law and outside etc. You can swim in the ocean but you can’t lie on the beach. I was standing in line at Walgreen’s and I spotted a woman whose toes had obviously just been done. I asked her where so I have found a clandestine nail salon. Of course, there are clandestine bars etc. Just as in the days of prohibition, people will seek out the unlawful.
Of course, the same goes for funerals. There is hope, of course. I just read in yesterday’s Wall St. Journal about a new Facetime product. It is sort of a Facetime for the dead. You can now purchase a camera ($500) with a remote at the grave site where you can talk to your dead loved one as well as listen. Of course, you also can pick up nearby conversations. If you have a very crowded cemetery, you might not want to have the interference of nearby dead neighbor relatives interfering with your dead Facetime. Also, you pay $12.99 each month for the subscription. So if you can’t make it to the cemetery, you can always do it remotely. What a life!
With all of us going through this “brave new world” scenario, I chuckle at all the plans I made for the last few years and how little control I had over those plans. I am sure you, too, are amazed at the life you are now being forced to live and the uncertainty of our times. However, with enough faith over our fears and the acknowledgment that this too shall pass, we can be proactive in adjusting to our new way of life. I learned long ago the secret of staying young was to lower your resistance to starting over. So here I am with a brand new set of hard conditions and tests of my courage and endurance. It is critical now to look at what is urgent and important versus something that appears urgent or appears important. There is a difference. Pick your most important goal and don’t lose sight of it.
Mine is selling my house and getting out from underneath the heavy burden that goes with a big, old, classic house. There is lots of upkeep, expenses and exhaustion. The goal is to sell it this fall and not lose sight of this goal while everything around me tries very hard to distract me. What is urgent and important is to get this house, sale-ready, partially stage it and move out so it can be sold quickly. Now there are lots of impediments to accomplishing this. But, selling this house allows me to free up all kinds of other choices in my life. This is the number one goal.
The strategy and tactics must be thought through. No military general goes to a battle without a strategy and tactics to win it. What are your battle plans? What is your strategy? What are your tactics? No goal, dream or wish can be yours without sacrifice. You can pay up front or you can pay on the back end. It seems mine will be paid up front. As you know my husband has brain melanoma and has been fighting that for 2 1/2 years. He was doing okay until he had a tremendous fall with severe brain bleeding on February 24th. That sent him back to the hospital, various nursing homes and a rehabilitation hospital. It took all of 4 months of advocacy, fighting, appealing and general forceful behavior to get him well. He managed to survive covid 19 from the nursing home, c-diff, a superbug, from another nursing home and he finally returned home with an horrendous case of athletes foot. What a guy! 25 pounds lighter, with caretakers 16 hours a day, he is gradually and I do mean gradually, starting to get some of himself back. (PS, if your are in your 50’s, consider purchasing long-term care insurance. It pays for about half his care but it is a big lifesaver.)
I tell you this because, in spite of all these setbacks and disappearance of funds, I continue to prepare for an October listing of our home. I never lost sight of the goal. I believe I have arranged (or with the universe’s help) have arranged for rent-controlled space in San Francisco to wait out the sale. I know that the divine wisdom knows better what to do going forward in light of what needs to be done. We need to be clear and not lose sight of the “what” in our lives. What do you want? Covid 19 will be with us a long time just as a bunch of other viruses are with us. We are getting a bit better at treating it and eventually we will have a vaccine. Probably many people will be reluctant to take the vaccine and I understand. My wish is to have really good treatment so if we get the virus, we don’t suffer as much or die as easily.
All of us would benefit from watching the NETFLIX film “CRIP CAMP”. Watch it and then count your blessings. It is a remarkable film and you can’t help but come away feeling blessed and guilty for what we think as a catastrophe. Let’s stay away from over-emphasizing our suffering. Learn to lean into the invisible world, the real world; the world you can depend upon. The man-made world cannot be depended on. It changes daily but the invisible world and universal principles never change. Let them be your comfort and your strength.