I’m Still Here…

I’m Still Here…

It’s been a while, hasn’t it? I offered you a New Year’s greeting, suggested two options for traveling toward the light at the end of this pandemic tunnel, and wished you a safe journey.

Then, I disappeared!

Well I’m happy to report I’m still here. I’ve managed to keep busy in my self-quarantine days with house projects, updates, and repairs that have kept me safely improving life inside my bubble. I’m still cherishing the small things—sunny days, fresh mulch, and my yard’s determination to welcome spring despite the huge flux in weather.

Life certainly isn’t back to normal (and it may never be), but boy the light at the end of that tunnel is getting brighter. Every day I try to keep my tunnel green by “growing through what I’ve been going through.”

I am still fragile, though. The new growth is tender, easily bruised by poignant moments. I cry just as easily for joy as I do for sadness, it seems. Life in all its positive momentum is still uncertain.

Inspiration is more important than ever.

My most recent uplifting moment comes from a new favorite artist, BB LaMartina,and her work entitled, “Staying Steady…Navigating through Turbulent Times,” pictured above. If you look closely, you can see the bow of a boat cresting a powerful wave. I love the stormy colors, tinged in gold (gotta have my bling!), with that hint of hopeful aqua misting in the background.

“Brighter, clearer days are ahead,” it whispers to me.

“Thank heavens,” I exhale back.

Meanwhile, yes, my New Year’s word for the year, meanwhile I keep moving, dipping up and down like that bow of the boat.

There have been some great highs:

Covid-celebrated birthdays for me;
Covid-celebrated birthdays for me

For my sweet Madison;
For my sweet Madison;

And even my precious puggle, Tripp;
And even my precious puggle, Tripp;

But perhaps the highest celebratory moment was my son’s wedding. Rescheduled twice already, the couple decided it was time to rethink what really mattered. So with only immediate family present, they wedded in what felt like a magical moment. Snow threatened, but then beautified the day:

Meredith and Peter

Meredith and Peter

I was honored to be asked to do a reading from a very special book—

I was honored to be asked to do a reading from a very special book

–the bible my father gave to my mother on their wedding day, June 15, 1955.

For a brief time in our Covid-tested bubble, life felt normal again—until it was back to reality and “everybody went everywhere,” back to homes in seven different states.

With no plans to reunite anytime soon, I sighed and settled back in to my mundane routines.

Then my body began to misbehave. I made it 13 months without my paralyzed parts needing medical attention, but now they do.

And then my sweet Tripp began to get his days and nights mixed up, pacing my bedroom floor and then staring into space for hours in the middle of the night, as if he were lost.

And the bow dipped.

But as I studied BB LaMartina’s piece, I was reminded of the most important question I’ve learned to ask while going through stormy seas. From the death of my brother, to managing my special needs children, to adjusting to life with paralysis, and even now as I’m going through a bit of a dip, the question I found to be most helpful was a simple one:

Who is in my boat?

Who can I invite aboard to help me get through what’s ahead?

That image of a worn but triumphant bow brought to mind each circumstance and its crew while renewing the importance of figuring out what’s needed to keep steady.

  • Who has expertise that’s helpful?
  • Who can listen with compassion and objectivity to clarify options for the next steps?
  • Who can be counted on for support, comfort, and an encouraging word?

Although family, faith, and special friends are givens for me, others vary by circumstance. But with the right crew, I’m confident I can stay steady.

And I have.

  • I re-engaged some creative experts to spice up my boring bubble-life with fresh ideas for home improvements.
  • I researched and found new specialists to deal with my medical issue, the same issue that put me in the hospital with sepsis two years ago. (Yep, have to keep “growing through what I’m going through” and made a crew change on that one, for sure!)
  • And when I told Dr. G, our vet extraordinaire, about Tripp’s sleep patterns, she explained with great compassion (for Tripp and for me) that it was part of his aging process, a confusion that can come with cognitive decline. She then prescribed a calming medication that has my senior pup sleeping peacefully through the night. (Now I can, too!)

Life is once again steady and moving forward. But if I hit a swell of turbulence, I’ll remember what to do.

How about you? What keeps you “staying steady” these days? Have you, too, found it helpful to have folks “in the boat” with you while traveling through stormy seas?

Tell me about it. I’d love to know.

And on we go…

My best – always,

Becky  (Nana B)

P.S. A special thanks to those who reached out to ask me “where I’ve been.” It’s nice to be missed! I’ve missed you too. I hope my next meanwhile won’t be so long!

P.P.S. Thanks for the donations for my birthday that benefited Pathfinders for Autism. Yes, it is April, Autism Awareness month, so all the proceeds will go to support their important mission.

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