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Freedom

My eyes can’t stand the strain of one more horrible disaster.

Wow! Talk about headlines! Between the wedding of the century, the floods, the tornadoes and the slaying of our world’s foremost terrorist, it’s pretty hard to catch one’s breath. It seems as though there’s a major event of some kind every day. Thank God the wedding was beautiful. My eyes can’t stand the strain of one more horrible disaster.

 But it does give one pause for thought now, doesn’t it? When you read of the tornadoes or the floods, do you ever try to truly imagine how it would feel to be a part of something like that? Can you imagine waking up, or coming out of hiding and finding Plymouth wiped off the map? Can you look down your street and imagine every bit of housing, every tree, every ballpark, every streetlight.. gone?

 Can you imagine the army barging into your house and taking your family away, or worse? Can you see us all camping out in makeshift tents on Court Street with banners and flags and assault rifles while the world looked on?

 Once again, I return to gratitude. I’m grateful for the climate, the ocean that stays pretty much where it should, the trees that are performing their Spring dance, the fact that my little mobile home is still standing, that my neighbor’s home is still there, that we have men and women who will stand up unselfishly with valor beyond words, and defend my freedom to live where and how I choose.

 I don’t mean to sound like a Pollyanna, but I am so darn grateful today for all that we have… and all that we have not.

 I guess it has to do with this aging thing. Stuff that seemed mundane and ordinary when I was “younger”, take on a greater meaning now. Things that I used to deem important, just aren’t. I see things I never saw before. I stop to admire the swans in the pond. I cherish the real time I get to spend with a friend (not on the phone or e-mail), I love my family more than I ever thought possible. I get excited when the cardinal calls from the oak tree in the morning.

 Thoughts of the suffering of others, of all the disasters and wretchedness befalling the world can bring me to tears. But I have learned to take things one day at time and to recognize that if all I can do to help them is Pray, then let my prayers be carried on every breath.

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