Thanksgiving 2020 – What I am Thankful For

Our year started as any other year with bringing in the new year 2020.  We celebrated with good food, friends and watching the ball drop at midnight.  Little did we know it would be a year like no other.  Already a virus was invading our land.  Our President knew of the virus and the seriousness but downplayed it and seriously delayed any reaction to control its effects.  We are now 10 months into this virus, and it is running out of control in our nation.  Watching the extensive travelling over the summer and the presidential rallies claiming the media was making too big a deal of the situation and we were rounding the corner was infuriating.  Now our hospitals and healthcare workers are overwhelmed with the holiday season in full swing.  Still I am hopeful and grateful during this dark time in our nation.

We heeded the warnings of the CDC and had a gathering at home with just 4 of us.  When my stepson came home from college last week, we wore masks around each other and socially distanced until we knew being around each other was safe.  We only have one other older friend in our home, who lives alone and does not get out except to come to our home.  Now that COVID is out of control all over the country we are back to only takeout dining and drives in the country.  This will be our life until Spring when a vaccine is on the horizon. 

This Thanksgiving I am more thankful than ever for my health, safety and love of my family.  I have a comfortable home, easy for socially distancing.  I have more than enough food and financially I have no worries.  Unfortunately, so many Americans this year cannot say the same.  There is an increase of food insecurity, evictions will be coming after December 26th when the government moratorium runs out and there is widespread unemployment.  We have been giving more to food charities and will continue this giving into 2021 as the need will be around for quite some time.  The election is over and with the hope of a new, more empathic and experienced administration I am hopeful in 2 to 3 years this will be only a dark memory.

I would ask you to look inward and look around you this holiday season for the blessings around you.  Even in bad times there is always something to be grateful for.  If you are blessed with more than most, please look inward on what you can do to help others as this is truly the only way to get beyond this by helping others.

I wish everyone reading this blog to stay safe and have as happy a holiday season you can have.  My prayers and blessings are will all of you.

Linda

Seasons In Life

We are born in the Spring of our life.  We start with parent(s) and family.  These people are put in place to teach us what we need to know and protect us from the world until we obtain the ability to protect ourselves.  As we blossom through Spring, we acquire some friends to sprinkle into our lives for growth.  Some will continue with us through the subsequent seasons, but most will move into their own directions as we do as well.  

If we are lucky all family and some friends will accompany us into Summer (early adulthood).  However, as we become more of who we are meant to be we discover some people, including family, are not healthy for us to continue our journey of life.  This does not mean we did not or do not care for them.  It just means we are different people and need to move into a different direction.  This was true for me regarding my mother and a close childhood friend.  As a felt more comfortable in my own skin I discovered these people were y toxic to me.  Through a process of self-growth, I decided to disassociate myself from these two individuals as well as other family members.  Through the years the same is true to others distancing themselves from me.  The Summer is the time you experience adult growing pains.  It is a time to start truly exploring who you are and what your interests are.  It is also a time to solidity your belief system.  This may coincide with your core family and friends or take you in a totally different direction.

Now that I am in the Fall season of my life I can look back and see how and why some people are still with me, some have left, and some have entered into this portion of my life.  I believe we attract the people we need to help us grow.  Not all people who enter will have a positive influence, nor should they.  I believe these are the people who truly teach us the most if we allow it.

I am grateful for all the people who have entered and left my life as I continue my journey.  I hope you are too. Linda

COVID and Family

George and I have been keeping abreast of information regarding virus cases, deaths and medical information to help keep us and others safe.  We discussed the upcoming holiday season and decided we would have small groups of 5 or less and require masks and social distancing during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.

My daughter is a general manager of a restaurant and therefore involved with the public daily. She is has been travelling for showers and weddings as well.  I informed her of our decision regarding the holiday and she has opted not to come.  We also discussed this matter with George’s sister and she too has opted to go to their brother’s house has these guidelines will not be followed.  We discussed a Zoom Christmas Eve with my brother and sister-in-law and they thought that would be a very good idea to spend time together at a distance.  These are the choices we are forced to make to keep ourselves and those we love safe from this virus.

Our leaders have made this virus political and therefore we must suffer longer than should be necessary.  If we were all on the same page we would be able to see and enjoy family and friends while maintaining good public health practices until a vaccine can be developed.  It saddens me how some see the mask as an infringement on their rights to be free and do what they want instead of a way to keep all safe during this time.  Parts of our family have chosen freedom over protection. 

The over 9 million infected and 230,000 deaths is not just a number.  These are lives and loved ones.  Our country is on fire and our people are suffering, yet 50% of our citizens see this as an overblown story and they do not want to be inconvenienced.  The scary thing is none of us truly knows how our bodies will deal with this virus.  Some of our family members believe they are safe and if they do get it, it will be minor and they will get better and move on.  However, they do not know that for sure and they could be infecting someone who is not so lucky.

I am hopeful that our country’s democracy and health will once again be strong and I look forward to better days ahead.  I do not see the mask as political oppression, but merely has a tool to keep my fellow Americans and myself safe during this crisis.

Choose Hope Over Hopelessness!

Every day I am amazed over the utter chaos and divide in our country right now. I called my stepson to touch base on his college experience as well as to see how he is doing since he does battle with anxiety. He indicated how he feels a sense of hopelessness regarding the upcoming election and if we will make any progress on climate change. He feels his future is bleak. Sad commentary coming from someone who is only 18 years old.

I shared with him how recently I have had some of the same feelings and even spent an afternoon in my craft room crying for this country and all that are suffering due to climate changes, lack of leadership with the virus and death and illness of loved ones because of this virus. Then I shared with him how I engage my thoughts instead my heart in feelings of despair and make an active decision to choose hope over hopelessness. When we choose hope there is room for action and possible change. When we choose hopelessness, we have already chosen to do nothing and opt out to be part of any solution. I further explained that he may be that one person to be the catalyst for true change. He could be that person to move our world forward. He certainly has the intelligence, but more important he possesses a great moral compass and an excellent sense of empathy. If anyone can facility change it is him.

So if you are reading this and feel hopeless and defeated, you are not alone. But, choose hope and be part of positive moving forward. No one knows what will happen today or tomorrow, all we can do is get up, breathe in and out and live our day to the best of our ability. Join me in Hope!

Linda

Americans

Republicans and Democrats (Us and Them)

Liberals and Conservatives (Us and Them)

Conservative Media and Mainstream Media (Us and Them)

Black Americans, Asian Americans, Latino Americans,

White Americans (Us and Them)

Catholics, Evangelicals, Muslims, Jews, Atheists (Us and Them)

Red States, Blue States, Purple States (Us and Them)

How did we get here?

We need leaders to bring us back together.  We need a mindset

To bring us back together.  At the end of each day we want the

same things.  We want a clean, safe environment.  We want

Good schools for our children. We want to be able to support our families.

 We want to know when we get sick we can get good healthcare.

 We want a better life for our children then we have had.  We want to receive

compassion and love.  We as Americans want these things

regardless of where we live.  Know that Russia is loving the divide and internal

civil war being played out in America. 

Truth is we are Americans.  Not red states, not blue states, not us and them.

 Just Americans!  

I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar!

This week a 70’s icon, Helen Reddy, died at age 78.  Her song, I Am Woman, was truly an anthem for the time and could not be more fitting today.  With the loss of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Helen Ready I cannot help but feel we are being sent signals from beyond as women to unite and take back our power.

I played this song over and over again and sang the lyrics at the top of my lungs. Here are some of her lyrics:

And I know too much to go back to pretend.

I am Woman hear me roar in numbers too big to ignore

Floor, no one’s ever going to keep me down again.

And I’ve heard it all before and I’ve been down there on the

Oh yes I am wise, but it wisdom born of pain.  Yes I’ve

Paid the price and I would do it all again.

Women unite and send our message loud and clear on November 3, 2020!  Do it for Ruth and Helen and all the women who came before you.

Linda

Apology to the World

I know this blog is supposed to support a positive attitude and spread good will. Honestly, with the virus and the corruption in our government process I am not feeling very positive. Our democracy is considered the Great American Experiment. Unfortunately, it is being threatened from foreign powers and (in my opinion) by our own president. I am afraid for our country because I think our citizens have taken for granted the freedoms we have fought so hard for.

Our memories appear to be short regarding equal rights for ALL. Women have forgotten that as recently as the 1970’s women could not get a credit card in their names, buy a home without a man, serve equally in the military and elsewhere. Women were not even allowed to make decisions regarding their own reproductive rights. There was a time when inter-racial marriage was illegal, a woman could be fired just for merely being pregnant. Our democracy is not perfect and we still have a long way to go to accept people purely on character and not on race, gender or religious beliefs. America is hard because you have to respect the rights of hate groups to voice their opinions even if you oppose them. However, I believe Americans have become complacent and lazy in search for facts and answers.

It appears strange to me that before this president we did not have terms like fake news, alternative facts and hoax and these terms only apply to news media and agencies that do not share his message. He is undermining our belief in the FDA and CDC by interfering and contradicting science. Americans forget we fought in WWII to defeat such a dangerous and corrupt leader in Germany, who used the very same tactics.

I am afraid for this Great American Experiment in November because our president is now creating doubt in our trusted election process and is threatening to contest the results if he does not win. America please wake up and protect all we hold so dear. Media’s job is to uncover inconsistencies and report what is happening. Their job is not to merely convey the president’s message and not confront him when necessary. Our medical agencies are there to research and protect the public, not push the president’s agenda and to make him look good for an election. Our election process is for we the people to select our leaders. Donald Trump does not rule this country, we do. I apologize to the world watching America truly fight a civil war and being destroyed from within.

RBG RIP

Last night Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away at 87.  We lost a giant at only 5 ft 1 in.  She paved the way for women’s rights and the rights of the oppressed.  She lived with dignity and integrity and stood up for injustice and corruption.  Now Mitch McConnell wants to hurry a Trump nominee through a vote in the Senate.  In 2016 the same Mitch McConnell blocked President Obama’s nominee saying the American people need to speak and it being an election year we should wait until after the election.  I believe the same words apply now.  For me, the death of Ruth means as women we need to pick up the torch and carry her good works forward.

I will not be silent, I will not turn a blind eye to corruption and dishonesty.  Our President has failed to protect us, govern for all Americans (not just his base).  He has turned a blind eye to injustice in this country and in many ways has contributed to it.  I will continue to speak.  I will continue to seek justice and unity in our country.  We are better than this and we need to act better than this.  Women and Americans for justice UNITE!

Linda

9/12/2001

We just remembered 9/11/01 in the USA.  As every year I watch all the specials remembering that day so as not to forget the magnitude of what our country experienced that day.  The incredible fear and sadness we felt.  My husband was a firefighter at the time and lost 2 of his fellow firefighters at ground zero.  I could not stop watching the news day after day and week after week.  But, yesterday I felt a new emotion of longing for our country.  I remembered how we felt on 9/12/2001.

On September 12th, 2001, unlike today, we were Americans.  We were not black, white, Asian, Hispanic, democrat or republican, just American.  We hung our American Flag on most houses across America.  The manufacturers of flags could not keep up with the demand to own one.  We were proud and united that day.  We were compassionate, caring and generous, we were what people should be.  We were the best of ourselves. 

As I watched Good Morning America this day, 9/12/2020 I longed for that day in 2001.  We are not the best of ourselves, but the worst of ourselves as Americans.  We are tribal and divided.  Some of us have embraced corruption in our government to push our personal narrative of Us and Them.  People I have called my friends for over 40 years don’t resemble the people I thought I knew.  When I see a Trump flag or a MAGA hat I only see hate and division.  Where did our compassion go?  Where did the United States of America go?  How do we get it back?  I know what you may be thinking, why can’t I see ‘their’ side of this?  Why can’t I embrace the difference of opinion?  I can’t because I can see how these decisions are affecting my safety and my freedoms, as well as the countless freedoms of those less fortunate them me.

How did a global pandemic become political rather than a health issue?  Why is a mask associated with fear and weakness, instead of kindness and compassion for one another?  I know why and I think if you are reading this you know why too.  It is time to take back our country.  It is time to return integrity back to our government.  It is time!

I want my country back.  I want to again say I am PROUD to be an American.  I hope as a nation we can find our way back to being the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, known as the beacon on the hill.  That is what I long for.

Linda

The Election Cannot Come Soon Enough!

I just finished watching the Democratic Convention this week.  I was very impressed with Joe Biden’s vision for our country and I truly feel he can give us the calmness and civility we are lacking right now.  I will watch the Republican Convention more to see what message is being given and why people still feel the need to follow such a poor leader.

Sadly, I have found myself seeing people I have known over 30 years differently.  I am questioning the true moral compass of some people I call friend.  This President stands for nothing I believe in as a human being.  Take party lines out of the mix and this man still falls very short presenting the nation I want to be proud of.  I am trying very hard to stay hopeful and non-judgmental of those around me.  I am reminding myself, that true freedom is allowing others to have an opinion extreme and opposite of you and knowing we must co-exist equally.  It is truly hard to be an American right now.

This has been the reason for less frequent blogging as it has been hard to maintain a positive attitude when I see such division and lack of cooperation and coming together for the common good.  Our very election and democracy is in danger and only half of America sees this.  The other half appears to be win at all costs.  I could be wrong about this and truly I hope I am, but I just feel our country and what we used to stand for is truly at jeopardy and other than vote I am not sure what else I can do.  I am sorry my blog this week is not a more positive message, but this is how I am feeling at the moment.  Are there others out there?  I would love to hear your comments.

Staying strong

Linda