I don’t know if it’s come across in my posts, or lack of posts but it’s been a rough few months for me. I have felt the weight of the world on my shoulders and anxiety has seeped in to overwhelm me as of late.
It all began with my son. His job has not been something he can rely on, and no new jobs have come his way. He works a month then gets laid off. He finally got hired back for two months and then last week was laid off again this time his employer tells him it could be several months before they can call him back. Once a mother, always a mother and I feel the need to be there for him and make sure he can keep a roof over his and his children’s heads.
Then there is the national politics. When I hear the Republicans saying they are going to de-fund Planned parenthood and the EPA I worry for all of us. I began picturing cities like Pittsburgh and Buffalo before the EPA regulations cleaned up the air and water. If you didn’t have the opportunity to visit Buffalo, NY in those years let me tell you the pollution from the factories was so bad it blocked out the sun. I remember the medical waste that was poured into Lake Erie before it was illegal and finding needles in fish and on the shores.
I thought I had that under control by reminding myself that the factories that polluted the cities are long gone and the few that remain wouldn’t consider removing the filters just because they could. But it turns out the tension was still there.
Don’t get me started on the name calling and insults this election year has brought. It’s brought out a side of people that is ugly and I would like to wish didn’t exist in the world. Where were my rose colored glasses when I needed them?
I guess it’s easier to take the subject lighter when you have a bit of distance from the circus.
I saw the flooding in the south and my heart broke for those families who are losing their homes and possibly their way of life yet again but I also got angry at the thought of all the time and money that went into rebuilding a city that was sinking. As the story broke that the levee in New Orleans was close to breaching (and it didn’t take a hurricane this time, luckily it held) I questioned the money spent to protect the city instead of improving other infrastructure across the country.
Here in Pittsburgh we have crumbling bridges. This one is so unsafe a bridge was built under the existing bridge to protect drivers below from falling debris. Yes, that’s real safe. In all fairness the particular bridge pictured below was finally torn down a couple of months ago but it goes to show the failing infrastructure we face.
As my mood deteriorated I began to focus not so much on the current state of those families situation but what the bigger picture was for all of us as climate changes intensifies and our elected officials ignore the problems we face to call each other names.
All this stress I’d put on myself was taking a toll. My shoulders were so tight they felt they could snap at any moment. I began to wake with headaches, something I rarely ever experience. When you allow so much negativity to seep into your thoughts can you be surprised to find your health suffers?
Then it hit me, I was focusing on all the negatives! What we focus on we create just as like attracts like. It was time to change the message and refocus my attention.
I stopped listening to the debates, I’d heard enough. I knew what each candidate stood for so why was I beating myself up watching this bad reality programming?
I also took a deep breath and reminded myself that no matter what I want to happen, my actions won’t change the political rhetoric any more than I can make a better job fall into my son’s lap.
I stepped back. Life will happen no matter what I do. I am not responsible for anyone else, what they say, do, or feel. It was time to look for the positive signs showing up around me and focus on those.
- The FDA will begin to test foods for glyphosate a leading ingredient in Round Up. This is a huge step to ensuring safer food.
- A couple purchased 300 acres of barren land and turned it into India’s first wildlife sanctuary.
And there are those things that hit close to home.
- my family is healthy,
- the neighbor boys are excited about spring and excited to be back to help me on the gardens.
- A highlight when the grandchildren visit has become browsing the seed catalogs because they enjoy growing their own food.
When I focus on the positive trends I see the headaches disappear and I am in a better frame of mind to make a difference in the lives I touch.