I have catastrophe burn out. I wish there was a box I could check on the menu that said, “Gone Fishing.” Ukraine has taken up most of my compassion budget, the earth’s heat wave has used up my allocation for terror, and then we have dear brother Trump’s steady poll numbers.
And this does not even include the grief I feel for the people in my own small galaxy, where friends are under siege from disease, mental illness, and children of all ages who have had failure to thrive for decades.
Life has been way, way too lifey this summer.
I am kind of despaired out.
So now what? Where is the renewal of energy and hope and willingness to help? I don’t know. But something has got to arise because I am shutting down: half and hour ago, I went to the Red Cross website to donate to the people on Maui, a place where I have experienced paradise a dozen times. As I was completing the form, a window popped up asking for a $12.99 processing fee. Really? I declined.
Then I went back to reading the New York Times. To put it mildly, I did not find uplift and hope there.
You can’t just put your fingers in your ears and shout “Lah lah lah lah,” when you read about climate change deniers in high places, or RFK, Jr. Well, I guess you can , but then you’re almost as deranged as they are.
What I would like is for God to take over and sort things out. But my son frequently reminds me of this story:
A man was about to set off a voyage across the ocean, and he knew this journey was harder than anything he had ever done before, beyond his physical limits. So before he set off, he prayed to God. He said, "God, please help me." And God appeared before him and he said, "I'm here. Don't worry. We'll do this together. You grab the oars and row, and I'll steer the boat." And they set off. Well, after a while, the man's arms got tired, and he turned to God and he said, "God, I'm so tired. Do you think we could trade places for a little while? And I steer, and you row?" And God said, "I don't row, bro."
People who were not raised by decent and politically active parents say dismissively, “Why don’t you just turn off the news?’” But there is a democracy to save for our young and we must remember Molly Ivins saying freedom fighters don’t always win, but they are always right.
People with unshakable religious convictions pat you and then assure you that God works in mysterious ways etc. Hey, thank you for sharing!
Where does this leave me? Willing and wanting to get back in that boat and row—helping the poor, registering voters, picking up litter—but maybe not today. Today is for prone yoga, ie, lying around with the animals. Today is for a beautiful, slightly-too-hot summer day. I haven’t prepared my Sunday school lesson, on the bratty older brother of the prodigal son who won’t join the feast because he didn’t get his way: my kids and I love stories about ourselves. Outside our living room window, hummingbirds dive-bomb the orange abutilon blossoms, making the poor kitty crazy, driving her to long stretches of mad chittering. She needs me. We have a deal: we help each other in times of stress. Gizmo the formerly tiny dog has gained the Covid three and ballooned up to an unhealthy 16 pounds. She and I could both use a little exercise. I need to go find her leash.
I’d say it looks like I have my work cut out for me today; ah, today.
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This one time special Wed 4pm outdoor class will be a gently challenging class. We will be on the floor half of the time and standing half . benches and the walls are used as support in balancing poses. Breathing and short meditations are woven into each class. Perfect for those who are a bit "out of shape" . Extra challenges will be offered to those who are in great shape! starting July 11th: Tuesdays 4:30-5:45pm. This is a semi private class and the cost is $20 per class. Location : small shelter by osprey nest, behind Golden Lake Elementary school. Watch for a half day retreat: Yoga, meditation, Thai massage and aerial yoga. Let me know of your interest. Also in Shoreview.
Im so glad to see mental health being addressed more openly. As part of my job as a substitute, I had to take a course about bullying. This was hard as it brought up the feelings I have about being bullied by my brother. Self esteem issues tag along thru my life as a result. I would like to teach yoga in the schools as a way to combat bullying. I feel, in general, that in our American society, those who are quiet and kind are deemed as weak and tend to get "picked on". When my brother asserted his power over me, my parents would say, " you two work it out". That gave him a license to continue because his strength and meanness was no match for me. Parents believe that this is a natural part of growing up and call it sibling rivalry, but there is also sibling abuse and that should not be allowed. This is from the course I took: Vector Training, K-12 Final Assessment Bullying: Recognition and Response: Quiz question 10 of 10: Which of the following best describ