Please help Kim

I don’t support random causes or chain letters but this particular story hit close to home, A woman in her 50’s went for a walk in her Whitby Ontario neighbourhood 2 nights ago. When she didn’t return by dark her husband called police who immediately started a search. She was found the next morning wrapped in a blanket and left at a riverside like trash.
She was brutally assaulted, Every bone in her face and all ribs are broken. One lung is collapsed. There is no brain damage but it is unknown the extent of internal organ damage. She was sexually violated. She remains in a drug induced coma in ICU in Toronto.
You can imagine what that road to recovery will look like mentally and physically. The whole family will require medical care and neither she nor her husband have benefits.
I know this woman and that’s why I write this. She is the sister of my in laws and she is a lovely woman, wife, mother, sister and friend. Please, if you can help, do. Link below, and thank you.
https://gf.me/u/yjc27z

KImmy

Professional Courtesy

Forgive me but I need to rant because for the 2nd time in the past few years I have fallen victim to shoddy treatment by a medical professional. I’m respectful of those who have achieved higher education for the benefit of others but I draw the line at those who do not reciprocate that same respect. (you know, if it wasn’t for us, you’d have no patients and therefore no livelihood)

Like so many women I have had annoying bladder issues for the better part of my adult life and at my last physical my GP suggested we look into it further to see if we could find a cause. I was referred in January 2019 to a ‘Bladder Clinic’ located  in Halifax. Two weeks ago in June, 18 months after the referral, I got a call for an appointment in early July. (ok, they’re either really, really good, justifying an 18 month wait, or really, really bad at time management) The offices are located in the main hospital, a bit of a nuisance as it’s in the centre of the city but at least my appointment was mid afternoon, so I shouldn’t encounter any business traffic. Two days before the appointment I received a call asking me to come earlier to allow for Covid screening, which is required everywhere now. No problem. I arrived at 2:00 for my 2:30 appointment.

Once screening was complete I was sent up to the offices where I was registered at the main desk, then directed to a waiting area. After about 10 minutes I was taken into an office where a nurse asked some preliminary questions and ran a few tests. She was friendly and pleasant when leaving, and wished me a nice day advising the doctor would be in shortly, closing the door behind her. The only furnishing in the sparse room was a bed, some bins full of equipment and a desk with a computer. I glanced at the computer screen noting it was 2:38pm when the nurse left me.

I didn’t have my cell with me or any reading material so I busied myself counting the ceiling tiles and looking out the window. Every so often I’d hear footsteps and readied myself to meet the doctor, but they all went past my door. I checked the time on their computer frequently (there was nothing else to do) and grew more and more irritated with each passing moment. Finally, at 4:00 I opened the door hoping someone would notice I was in there, still waiting. I glanced out into the hallway and the only person other than me was an elderly man mopping the floors. The waiting room was empty. I glanced into the 2 adjoining offices and they too were empty. I wandered out further and glanced down the hall but not a sole was to be seen. Puzzled I walked out to the registration area where I’d checked in to ask if they could help me but the main doors were closed, the staff apparently gone home. I went back into the room gathered my things and left, super annoyed, largely at the doctor for operating such sloppy business practices, but partially at myself for being stupid enough to sit there for an hour and a half.

When I arrived home my husband said the doctors office had called at 4:05 looking for me, which would coincide with my departure because my parking ticket was stamped 4:07 when I paid to leave, so she finally arrived in the examination room just after I left. He said they were apologetic about the delays, ‘they were really busy’, and wanted me to call to reschedule. Really? I waited a year and a half for the appointment, wasted half a day, paid $10.00 for parking, and spent just under an hour driving home because now I was in rush hour traffic. Do you honestly think I will EVER come back to this office? What kills me here is the arrogance. You leave a prospective new patient in a closed room for 90 minutes and never check in to let them know the situation? How dare you treat people this way. It’s a lucky thing you’re paid by government cause if this was a private business you’d be bankrupt!

The license granted to a professional entitles them to ply their trade, period. It does not give them license to treat another poorly simply because they can, and how they choose to behave is very much a choice, a choice of conscience, and shamefully some so called ‘professionals’ clearly do not have a conscience. (I guess all that education can’t buy you common courtesy?)

If you truly had a calling to help humanity in the form of medical aid then do it with humility and what should be mutual respect, and if you can’t manage that, go get a job with the post office or airport security – where patrons are used to being treated like crap.

Professional Courtesy

 

 

The Speed Demon

That’s me. I am one of those people who does everything in high gear. I walk fast, talk fast, I even eat fast (my husband calls me ‘The Hoover’ because he says I inhale my food like a vacuum) By contrast, my husband is exceedingly methodical. By the time he has selected his condiments, freshened his drink, and settled down to eat I’m done and already eyeing his pork chop. (Jeez, when I see it in print I feel like the Tasmanian Devil)

I don’t quite know what it is that sets our pace but I do know that, for me at least, it’s locked in place, I just can’t seem to slow down. I once worked with a woman who did everything at a snail’s pace. She walked slowly, carefully, and every action she performed was orderly and well thought out. I could no sooner slow down to her pace than she could speed up to mine and in hindsight we probably made quite a sight, she slowly gliding along, and me kicking up the dust in a flurry of movement beside her.

Even when I walk I move quickly, I know,  not because I’m aware of it, but because I’m usually breathless when I get to my destiny. There’s a very small number of friends willing to walk with me because they usually can’t keep up. I don’t stroll or saunter. I walk with purpose, my stride is confident, and if you’re in my way, you should move cause I won’t be held responsible for injury sustained when I bowl you over.

You would think then that I would be a prime candidate to run, but no (I guess I’m not in that much of a hurry) I do not run or jog, for 2 reasons. First, it hurts. On the rare occasion I’ve had to run my hip joints seized up so tight I could barely move for days after. Second, it’s no fun. I defy you to find any jogger smiling as they run past you. They always look pained and well,,,, angry, as though some one forced them to do it. (I have no desire to inflict such pain on myself) At least when I walk I can relax, and I do.

I wonder occasionally about the effects of rushing on my health. Does my inability to slow down keep me fit or does it exhaust my system such that I could suffer long term ill effects (could this be why I have high blood pressure?) On the other hand, I sleep very soundly and for a good 8 hours each night,,,,surely that must be restorative, and likely a direct result of my high energy pace in waking hours?

I know with certainty I am not alone. There are many like me who consistently run on high and I’m not sure which is better, moving through life in a hurry or taking it easy. On one hand I’d like to think speeding through life means I can accomplish more in the same amount of time. On the other, I wonder if I’m missing things because in my rush I’m not “stopping to smell the roses”. Either way, I don’t see myself changing any time soon so I see no point in over-analyzing it (I don’t like the smell of roses anyway)

speed demon

She’s heeeeeeeeere!

My daughter just had her first baby, a girl, and my 4th granddaughter.(this’d be a good time to invest in shares of Procter & Gamble cause in about 14 years sales of feminine products are gonna sky rocket, thanks to my childrens contribution to the growing female population!) She came into this world kicking and screaming and if she’s anything like her mother she’ll remain feisty. (she gets that from her father)

I marvel at her very existence. Her mind is a clean slate and every day of her future offers endless possibilities. She will have choices, choices of her education, her career, her lifestyle, and opportunity abounds. She will make mistakes, mistakes that cause her heartache and suffering, and she will celebrate her many successes. Each life event, good or bad, will leave its’ mark on her sole and at the end of her time here, that weathered sole is all she will take with her when she leaves this world. Wouldn’t we all like to start over, skip the mistakes, make better choices? Maybe,,,,,, maybe not.

When I look back on my life now I see where I erred. I have my regrets and there’s any number of situations I might’ve handled differently, but if I had, would I still be the same person I am today? (Now there’s a loaded question)

Like anyone, I have my moments of reflection and there are events that have occurred in my life I’m not quite sure I understand but I have to trust that they occurred for a reason. Each encounter brought someone new into my world, if only briefly, and each experience, good or bad, taught me something of value and I’d like to think I gleaned what I could from each, adding to my library of information. Now, in my mature years, I scan the books in my library and allow myself to wallow in the memories. The painful memories are now less painful, lessons having been learned, and the happy memories remain happy and fresh in my minds’ eye. (maybe that’s our reward for surviving the battle of life?)

Today dear granddaughter you begin your journey, your battle to survive life. You will play and learn and laugh and cry, and I am privileged to be one of those chosen to walk this path with you. I promise to help you see the beauty of this life and I will help you to shoulder the challenges. All I ask of you is to be kind, to yourself and others. Give yourself room to grow, forgive wholeheartedly, and love unconditionally, and know that it’s ok to falter.

It’s ok to cry, let it out (it’s cleansing and teaches us humility)

It’s ok to make mistakes because that’s how you will learn. (trial and error)

It’s ok to say or do something you regret, as long as you make it right for all involved. (keep a clear conscience)

It’s ok to not be perfect because none of us are, just celebrate who you are (no judgement)

and, most importantly,,,,,,, it is always, ALWAYS ok to have salami and Oreo cookies for breakfast at Nana’s house.

Welcome to the world little one!

Shes here

Music – the universal language

I love music and keep my radio on all day. In fact, if I had to give up one of my electronic devices, it’d be my television set. (there’s nothing worth watching anyway) And I love a very broad range of music styles, Calypso, Reggae, Country, Rock, Pop, and even some Classical (not Jazz though, never Jazz,,,and no bagpipes,,,,ghastly noise) I am neutral on most artists because every artist is likely to have at least one song I like, and I do have my favourites. I love Nana Mouskouri – hers is a very unique style, an operatic voice set to a combination pop/classical/European folk music, with a substantial Greek band behind her. I admire her range and respect her knowledge of several languages, in all of which, she sings fluently.

I like KD Lang. Her crystal clear voice and throaty after-tones, tell you without a doubt that she is feeling every note of her music. When she sings, she is ‘The Girl from Ipanema’, and I’ve yet to hear any one singer or group sing Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hallelujah’ like she does. Some songs are just meant for one artist. Elvis and ‘Can’t help falling in love’, Bing Crosby and ‘White Christmas’, many have tried their version of these songs but there’s nothing quite like the original. (so give it up already and find your own songs instead of coasting on the coattails of another’s success)

I admire the multi-talented female artists like Alison Krauss and Dolly Parton but you can only listen to one or two songs before you’ve had enough because of their high pitched voices….after a while it starts to sound too much like shrieking. (I think mid pitched voices are the easiest on the ears, alto or the male baritone) And while Sarah McLachlan and Diana Kroll have lovely voices, I can’t appreciate eithers genre. Diana Krolls’ ‘Bluesy’ style always takes me to a smokey saloon where a hard looking woman is sobbing into her cups, and Sarah McLachlans’ style is exceedingly somber (does she ever sing anything upbeat?) I’ve dubbed hers ‘music to slit your wrists by’.

And I know I’m alone in saying this but I honestly think Roy Orbison and Vince Gill strain when they sing. It’s like the song has been set in a key that’s just slightly out of range of their ability.

I like Keith Urban, Cat Stevens, and John Fogarty but I also harbor a secret love of the older performers like Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra, or the more eclectic Don Ho and Trini Lopez….they’re just fun. And I’m not beyond enjoying an evening of Austrian folk music or Italian love songs.

I love a good vocal group but I can’t appreciate those that are repetitive in their style,,,like ‘The Beachboys’. Every song sounds like the last, monotonous and predictable, and very dated. Love the Eagles, Little Big Town, Simon and Garfunkel, most Blue Grass groups, and if you play me Latin or Spanish guitar music I’ll follow you anywhere, love those strings.

I guess what I love most about music is its’ ability to take me away. There’s no thought needed, no effort, just close my eyes and float with the melodies. Ok, every now and then I belt out a tune myself but I live on a remote property so there’s no risk of embarrassing myself,,,,although I have on occasion scattered a flock of crows or startled a deer into bolting. (guess they’re not music lovers?) And I can have nothing in common with another except that we both like a certain song or artist and boom, we’re friends. Music has the ability to calm the sole, entertain the mind, and ignite even the most unlikely relationships. It really is the universal language (let it speak to you)

Even as I write this my radio plays in the background and I have to stop periodically to sing along. (Funny, a woman just passed by walking her dog and when I started to sing he started howling….which proves music speaks to all life forms, yes?) Thank heaven for musicians, vocalists and radio transmission….I couldn’t imagine my life without them. (Gotta go croon me a little ditty!)

Music the universal language

Keep a level head

The Covid virus forced all of us to adopt new practices with respect to hygiene and social distancing to ensure we minimize the spread. At the height of the pandemic most resorted to wearing facial masks for even the simplest outing, you just couldn’t be too careful.  Now, despite the fact that this virus is currently under control in our province many businesses still, understandably, require the use of facial masks and very detailed screening; dental offices, hair salons, etc, where close facial contact is unavoidable, and this makes sense. What doesn’t make sense is the blatant fearmongering of those who clearly don’t know when to employ a sense of reason.

A friend was grocery shopping earlier this week and while browsing the shelves of food, a woman behind her sneezed. She did so in her sleeve and she was a good 10 feet behind. My friend says she was startled, not by the sneeze, but by the reaction of another woman ahead of her. The woman literally jumped back and pressed her back up against the shelves, as though lining up for a firing squad, a look of panic on her face. Do you think this reaction is just a tad over the top? What did she think would happen,,,,that the impact of the sneeze would blow her head off? For God’s sake, people sneeze, and we are at the height of allergy season. Could it be this panic-stricken victim is a prime candidate for curbside pick-up or home delivery?

Another friend said she inadvertently went down the ‘wrong way’ in the grocery aisle and was the recipient of several dirty looks. You know, this whole roadmap maze thing in grocery stores is new to all of us, and she’s not the first to ‘take a wrong turn’. I’ve done that myself and I hardly think it fair to condemn those of us who are still getting used to all the new rules.

I can’t help but think people are over-reacting. Yes, we need to be careful. We need to adopt new routines for contact and cleanliness, but we also need to be realistic. I’m puzzled by the lone driver who’s wearing a mask. He’s the only one in the vehicle and all the windows are closed. What’s he protecting himself from?

And I’m stunned every time I see someone out walking, alone or with a pet, and they’re wearing a face mask. There’s not a living sole in sight,,,why would they need a mask? Surely they can’t think that inhaling fresh air outdoors is lethal, and if they do, they’re beyond paranoid and shouldn’t be venturing out at all. What is wrong with these people? Have they no common sense?

Medical experts have made it clear face masks will not prevent you from getting the virus, they will simply protect others from your germs, whatever they are, i.e. if you aren’t sick you’ve nothing to spread to another. The donning of a face mask is recommended in many public places but is not mandatory. I have not been ill so I am not likely to spread anything to anyone else, so at the moment, I do not feel the need to wear a mask. That said, I always carry one with me so that should I find myself in a situation that requires one, I’ll be ready. I will not wear a mask when walking alone outdoors, and I certainly won’t wear one when driving alone in my car. That just doesn’t make sense for me but I will respect another’s choice in these situations because while it may be puzzling, it hurts no one. It’s just odd.

What I will not accept is the ridiculous over-reactions of those who make it their mission to target the rest of us in society who exercise a little common sense. We are being careful. We are mindful of others and committed to distancing, and should this dreadful virus spike again we will all exercise extreme measures as warranted but we will also act with a rational mind and a level head. Get real already.

The ‘second wave’ of this virus is predicted to hit in the fall, in line with regular flu season, and given that the symptoms are similar, I can’t imagine how these fear mongers will react then. (They’ve probably already ordered their cosmonaut suit.) I pray the predictions for fall are wrong. And I pray every day that a vaccine is developed, but until such time I will continue to practice caution in my daily routines to ensure I protect myself and others, however, I will also keep a level head because panicking will only lead to irrational behaviour and we already have enough of that in society without the pandemic.

Panic

The Finger of Blame

On a recent news broadcast our Prime Minister was seen kneeling with other protestors at a rally for anti-racism, and while this was clearly intended to be an act of solidarity, support, and compassion, it was instead criticized because he wasn’t social distancing. Had he not attended the rally he would’ve been blamed for lacking compassion (you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t) and I was disappointed that the opposition chose such a sensitive situation to call him out. Surely there are more relevant political issues to challenge? But call him out they did.

Several weeks ago we experienced a mass murder. It was horrific and many lives were senselessly lost, many families destroyed forever. The investigation is ongoing and the public are updated as to status and findings. Amid these updates come the accusatory comments from various groups blaming everyone from the police to rescue workers, to Canada’s emergency alert system for not advising the public sooner. The reality is that nothing like this has every happened here before and no one could’ve fathomed that it would. We can only help heal those who’ve suffered and work to establish a routine that will ensure this won’t happen again, i.e. pointing the finger of blame after the fact, is easy. It’s also counter-productive and serves no purpose.

Why then are we so quick to point the finger of blame? Does it somehow absolve us of any perceived guilt, or are we looking to make another accept responsibility? Sometimes things just happen and the constructive response should be to learn from it and move on. Maybe it’s human nature, and if so, what a shame, because the energy we spend pointing fingers could be better utilized working on solutions.

We blame our municipal government for delays in traffic due to construction, but if they didn’t repair the roads we’d blame them for damage to our vehicles caused by pot holes.

We blame factories for polluting our air, yet we buy every available gadget they manufacture because it makes our lives easier so if they were to stop manufacturing we’d blame them for taking away our gagets.

For that matter, we blame society for traffic and heavy volumes but you’d be hard pressed to find a home anywhere that doesn’t boast a minimum of 2 to 3 cars in their driveway.

We blame our education system for failing to provide necessary tutelage to our children when they can’t keep up with the curriculum, yet we forgo spending that time with them as parents because it’s more important that they go to hockey practice or dance class. And we blame our teachers for not giving the much needed individual attention to our children but if we hire more teachers to give them that better teacher/student ratio it’d raise our taxes and we’d blame the government for that.

Maybe we’re just a society of complainers, after all it’s easier to point the finger of blame than it is to do something about it.

At the end of the day we are all responsible for what goes on in this world, so maybe it’s time we stood up and took responsibility. I, for one, have been blaming the Covid virus for my weight gain. Isolation meant every day was spent planning the next meal (and eating it) and because we could go nowhere every day was Friday, so you celebrated with a couple of glasses of wine. (This regimen does not make for a lithe body) I see now there’s no one to blame but me for this (although I did search for a scapegoat) so I am accepting blame and doing something about it. I still spend my days planning my next meal but I’ve incorporated more veggies, less starch, AND I’ve switched to vodka (it’s lower in calories)

Small steps……taking the blame instead of giving it, isn’t easy.

Blame

Midlife, and everything leading up to it

Infancy to childhood, Mid-life to Menopause….why did the fun stop? We’re born with a clean slate – an innocent and impressionable young mind and from the moment we enter this world we start gathering information and developing ideas. A bright future awaits us all and life is good.

In our childhood every new experience is exciting and fresh. We exist only to play because this is how we learn. Eating is optional, experimental, and is needed only to sustain us through play. We have boundless energy and a vivid imagination, and life is fun.

In our youth we seek adventure, test our wings (and our parents), and are up for pretty much anything. We experiment with alcohol, junk food and a racy lifestyle because our bodies can take it, for now. ….and we’re still having fun.

Then, before you know it, we come upon our adult years and ‘boom’ responsibility hits us right between the eyes. Kids, mortgages, careers, aging parents; the whole nine yards, but that’s ok cause we’re still of sound mind and able body (and by now we have the means to maintain a fully stocked bar) Junk food now gives us heartburn but we still maintain a steady eating regimen of pizza and cocktail nuts – we just wash them down with beer and wine (cause it’s cheap and abundant). We have friends we can commiserate with, jobs we can immerse ourselves in, and hobbies to distract us. We’re thirty-something, invincible and life is still fun. Who knew it would end there?

We all have that birthday that hit us harder than any other. The turning point where we had to grudgingly acknowledge that we are, finally, middle aged and no longer societies ‘leading’ demographic. No longer will we set the trend – that torch has been passed (not willingly) to those 10 years younger than us (and they now refer to us as Maam and Sir)

What used to be natural highlights in a woman’s hair (I swear to God they were natural….at some point) are now defiant streaks of grey so we revamp our household budget to include monthly visits to have our roots covered. For me that ‘birthday of change’ was 35. I don’t know why, but turning 35 was a turning point in my life. I got rid of most of my clothes, invested in a complete wardrobe of denim, and sported sunglasses that my husband said made me look like Onassis (Aristotle, not Christina) I thought I was really happenin’,,,,turns out I was just really loosin’ it, and this was just the beginning. The forties awaited.

I can’t say it was just me. My husband hit mid life too, and while he didn’t radically change his wardrobe he did try his hand with a brush on dye for his beard, until he endured such a serious skin rash he had to stop. (What was once the distinctive ‘salt and peppering’ in a man’s hair was now either a bald spot or a more solid greyish-white, neither of which is youthful —- see, woman aren’t the only ones that succumb to vanity) He did however indulge with his passion for golf, investing in countless clubs; big ones, little ones, long, short – he had to buy new bags to house them all (we had no less than 11 golf bags in our basement…..and only 1 golfer in the house)

Throughout our forties we both noted a little slowing of our metabolism (ok, we put on a few pounds) and our clothes somehow didn’t look quite as sharp as they once did. Trendy fashion was now being replaced by elastic waistbands and sensible shoes, (who knew denim was so stiff…what was I thinking?) but eventually we accepted our progression to middle age, and just as we did, ‘boom’ – the fifties,,,, and this one packed a punch!

I hit menopause, or rather,,,, it,,,, hit,,,me. I spent the next several years battling the bulge, plucking unwanted hair out of various parts of my face, and swabbing down my sweat-soaked body. (I’m just a big puddle in sneakers) And like any rational middle-aged woman, I lashed out at a world that dared to be so unjust, raged against a God that would sentence any female to this hell (because 36 years of menstruation wasn’t punishment enough?) so I basically bitched (because if women didn’t bitch we’d explode) If I have to go through this, I’m not goin’ quietly, or alone!

And fortunately I didn’t have to…God gave me a husband to abuse. While I struggled with ‘the change’, my husband was going through a ‘change’ of the male kind. He invested in a wardrobe of Hawaiian shirts, bought a nice straw, rimmed hat, and traded in the family sedan for a ‘big ole Buick’, aka, a Geezermobile. (every Geezer has one eventually) We’ve gotten the 11 golf bags down to 7 (it’s a work in progess) and his snack of choice is now any kind of dip (cause nuts now hurt his teeth) washed down with a rye and ginger (his medicine of choice) I suppose I should be grateful. I have friends whose husband’s impulsively bought an expensive sports car when they hit mid life (because when he no longer turns the heads of young women he needs a car to do it). Others take up with a younger woman (but they’d better have money cause there a price for that arm candy) and if they go so far as to leave their families and settle down with their Barbie Doll, eventually she’s going to want to ‘nest’ and that puts them right back in the humdrum life they just left behind…..only now they’re 30 years older…. not so fun anymore.

I’d be lying if I said the Sixties don’t scare me. I am cautious. On the other hand the fifties were such hell, how much worse could it be? I will acknowledge one thing though,,,,,every decade, every change, and every challenge, humbled me. It made me more reflective, more tolerant, more appreciative of everything I learned along the way (although I would’ve preferred the Coles-notes version of menopause) What doesn’t kill you really does make you stronger, and smarter, and better. I wonder, if we could be born with the knowledge we die with, would we have changed anything in our path of life? Maybe,,,,,,,,,, but would it have been as much fun,,,,cause isn’t that what life is all about?

woman exercise walking

Housework – man vs woman

The days are getting longer and the sunlight seems brighter, illuminating the filmy mess on my windows and heralding the arrival of spring. Winter leaves a mess inside and outside a home; a mess most men ignore. I look out the window and see a garden that needs tending, broken branches to collect, and a garage jam packed with lawn furniture waiting to be pulled out and hosed off. My husband looks out that same window and sees the arrival of golf season.

How can men be so oblivious to housework? They seem to notice when it’s dirty but they rarely ask how it gets cleaned or who it gets cleaned by, clearly preferring not to know. Most recently my husband commented on how dusty the house felt; said he could feel it when he breathed, then he looked at me expectantly, so I replied, “then why don’t you dust it?” (my breathing’s ok) He dropped the subject.

Later on I suggested we have our air ducts cleaned and he agreed. It hadn’t been done in years and this was a good project for him (after all, he brought up the dusty subject)….I had to remind him, several times, this was to be HIS project. (bet he was sorry he mentioned it at all) Now to his credit, he did shop around, got some quotes and called a local duct company to book a cleaning and once it was done he noted how much better the air quality felt. The only thing I noticed was the mess left at every duct opening, (funny he didn’t notice that) the mess I had to clean.

Like most women, I have a cleaning routine, and standards. I like my kitchen and bathrooms fresh, if for no one else but me. Men don’t seem to be as concerned about the cleanliness of their homes (or maybe that’s just their ploy to ensure they don’t have to do it?) Dust can gather on furniture, floors could stick to their shoes and laundry can be done on a ‘need to wear basis only’, unless it’s their golfwear….that’s a priority.

My husband and I have found our compromise. I do ‘most’ (ALL) of the indoor work, and he tends to the yard, but only after 18 holes of golf (that’s his compromise) Last week I spent a day cleaning floors and windows, a major undertaking, and once you start you can’t stop till the job is done. My husband returned home after his round and had lunch while reviewing his golf scores. Then he had to catch up on news in the markets (it’s very important he remain informed) after which he rested on his chaise (it’s been a busy morning) Eventually the noise of the vacuum cleaner disturbed his slumber enough that he had to get up (there’s just no getting any peace around here) and he headed outside to mow the lawn. (Yay!)

Satisfied I’d finally gotten him to do something around the house I tackled the closets. After about 15 minutes I noticed the lawn mower had stopped, so curious I stepped to the window to look outside and there he was lying in the hammock with his hat over his eyes, the lawn mower sitting in the middle of the lawn, mid stripe. (I would later learn that the sun was too hot at that particular time and he felt it prudent to cease all physical activity lest he succumb to heat stroke) I give up.

Maybe men have the right idea. Maybe women are too anal about cleanliness. Men seem to find more time for relaxation than we do and they don’t stress the untidiness of their home. I love the feeling of cooking in my freshly cleaned kitchen, or showering in my disinfected bathroom, and that motivates me to want to clean. Even my showering routines are thorough; washing my hair twice, applying conditioner, and scrubbing every inch of my body to get that tingly clean feeling. My husband can shower, shave, and dry his hair in under 10 minutes (so how thorough can he be?) and he’s good with it.

I guess at the end of the day we have to take responsibility for the standards we set for ourselves and accept that the expectation of these standards will dictate our workload. I will continue to clean, celebrating the results, and rewarding myself with a luxuriously long hot shower afterwards, and my husband will always be content to exert himself minimally (unless it’s on a golf course) then hose himself down in the garage.

I guess it all comes down to standards.

The winds of change

My husband was watching a stock channel on television, not something I typically tune into, but I happened to overhear an economist talking about the effects of the global pandemic on our future and it caught my attention. He was talking about the job market and said retailers have been looking for an opportunity to eliminate the simplest of jobs by automation, and while no business would wish a deadly virus on society, this pandemic has provided them with the very opportunity they needed. He went on to say that by the year 2022 we would not see any cashiers in stores, rather we’d be using self check outs and paying with cards, thereby eliminating cash. This startled me in many ways most importantly, how would so many in society make a living if even the most basic jobs are gone?

Over the last few months the Covid virus has abruptly swept across the globe not only claiming lives, but seriously changing our day to day lives and negatively impacting our economies. Many small businesses are closed for good and those corporations large enough to survive now see new ways to do business. Employees are working from home and managing. Many claim to be happier because they can structure their day to ensure work and family balance, and employers who now see their people can be productive working from home so no longer need large office space. (I wouldn’t want to be a commercial real estate holder right now)

We are distancing from friends and family and when we do have social contact we are re-evaluating how and how much. The changes caused by this pandemic are making us more selective of who we choose to be with, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Perhaps we should’ve been more selective all along. I’m seeing more and more families together, laughing, playing, even working together. My neighbourhood has never been so beautifully landscaped because while isolating at home families are making projects to clean up their properties.

Children are missing their schoolmates, no question, but they’re finding new fun with siblings and parents and the joy appears to be reciprocal. This is not a bad thing.

Couples are reconnecting because when we all work from home there’s no escaping each other so if the relationship was strained before this pandemic will make it or break it and that’s not a bad thing either because it forces us all to face our situations. If it was bad before, putting off the inevitable isn’t going to fix it.

The pandemic is also testing world leaders making it easy for all to see those who are strong and capable of leading their nations through a crisis and those who clearly aren’t. (I’ve never been prouder to live in Canada)

Every day brings a new normal, something new to get used to, like it or not, and while we were once so resistant to change, we now have come to accept that the winds of change are here to stay. Life will never go back to where it was, and that too may not be a bad thing.

 

 

New world