The song starts out, “I’m only pretty sure I can’t take anymore” and this blog will begin similarly…or like in Hangover II, I want to stomp around in the street wildly asking “WHAT the F**k is going on??!!” but what is going on, at least to my mind, is that this year is starting off totally crap for too many and I for one am going to do a bit of a reboot today, thus pretending that tonight is New Year’s Eve and smudging the heck out of my house and myself and doing a 2022 restart!!!
These last two weeks have been brutal for too many people I actually know, and for too many people I know of, or have heard and read about…there have been falls, bone breaks, break-ups, heart failures, heart breaks, financial losses, job losses, friend losses, and vacation cancellations, marriage cancellations, and coughs, colds, and covid-covid-covid. It is a rare morning that there is not bad news in a text message on my phone, on the television, a program on NPR, or some miserable story or statistic on google, and I feel like THIS IS NOT HOW 2022 is GONNA BE!!!! Is it????
Now, to be clear, from March of 2020 through today, some people have had their lives totally ruined or upended, or well, ended, as in they are no longer of this earth…I am one of the people who has, thus far, gotten off with barely a scratch…VERY LITTLE that is bad has happened to me at all, but because I am such a deeply “feeling” person, I am constantly feeling all the feels of ache and angst that others are suffering, and I for one am exhausted. Oh to be a doctor or nurse right now…I can’t imagine. AND I do have a friend who is a doctor, she is exhausted. AND teachers!! Good grief how exhausted they are!! What a “first world problem” I know, for me, to say that the bad news is exhausting and I don’t mean to minimize the suffering of others, but I am thankful that for whatever reason, my life has not nearly been as hard as the lives of too many…there are literally women my age with minor children who have lost their jobs, their rentals, their cars, and are couch surfing trying to keep their families together, and there are men who have committed suicide over the financial messes they got in since they lost their jobs or businesses because of a global pandemic that some took very seriously and some still think is no big deal…but it is only “no big deal” I suppose if you have not yourself suffered or feel the suffering of others though a deeply compassionate heart.
Then there are others, of course there always are, who have THRIVED…people who worked for a friend for cash, but “cashed in” on the months of unemployment bonuses intended to help people not become homeless or hungry, or the “skilled” business people who know how to work the system, oh yes let me get a PPP loan, and apply to have it forgiven, and because I know how to do the tax trickery, let me also buy a sports car, or buy a vacation home, or hide lots of money away for my retirement even though that was not AT ALL what the government intended with this loan that I miraculously now don’t have to pay back…Yes, some people who could do for others out of deeply empathetic emotions, instead do for themselves, only and always, and some people who know what they are doing is wrong but, because they will likely not get caught, do it anyway…there is always one…or more…
It’s been nearly two years of wiping down shopping carts, unless you are my daughter who literally has been sanitizing her hands and wiping down shopping carts for her entire adult life. It’s been nearly two years of backing away from people who cough and sneeze and while I suppose we always did this in line at a store, or waiting for a table in a restaurant, it’s different now…I suppose this is how it’s gonna be for a long time in many ways.
There are couples who used to make their relationships work just fine because they had a rhythm of their home life, tasks and obligations and habits that helped them to live together in harmony…AND THEN OUT OF THE BLUE, or so it seemed to many, the man who wore the Bespoke suits and accumulated thousands of air miles is wearing the same sweat pants for four days in a row and accumulating high scores on Free Cell…and the woman who organized her household and chores and children with the efficiency of a Swiss train schedule is now positively overwhelmed as a teacher/nurse/babysitter/chef/maid/laundress…AND now their relationships are suffering because their roles have gone wonky and they don’t know how it’s gonna be…
My advice, or at least what I’m going to do, is RE-DO 2022. I am literally going to “pretend” that tonight is the start of a new year…I am going to make some wishes and write them on pieces of paper and light them on fire in my prayer bowl, I am going to light some sage and smudge my own self with an eagle feather and I am going to start at my front door and walk and “pray” smudge the perimeter of this house, I am going to make my deals with the universe at bed time, I am going to make wishes and pray for those suffering, and I am going to do my best to answer the question, How’s It Gonna Be??, with the only acceptable answer I can think of…BETTER.