Searching for Happiness

What things make me happy today? Hmmm.

I’m not sure anything is making me happy on this our 4th, or is it only the 3rd, week of quarantine. I’ve lost track. I started before it was ordered because my immune system is somewhat compromised. So I’m thinking it’s my 4th week, maybe just starting. Who cares?

It’s been too long, but it’s necessary. I keep wanting to run to the store for things, and then, think better of it. This is the worst time, they say. Do without. So I’m snacking on olives, just a few, one of the few things that I have that are not carb-loaded. Kalamata olives, green pimento-stuffed olives, large green olives stuffed with garlic and jalapeno. They’re good, and I’m grateful to have them. In my quest not to become an alcoholic during this time, I am drinking a diet ginger ale.

My, life is boring. Or, my life is boring. Either way I punctuate it, it is a true statement.

A friend texted me a couple of days ago and asked me if we could do a virtual sound healing. So, I’m looking into it. It’s possible. I bought a tripod for my phone. And think I may get a decent microphone too. We would hold it either on my tiny deck or in my back yard. Sans an audience. Although…..honestly, I may have a few people show up. It won’t be until May, so maybe we can, by then, have a few people over if we continue to social distance. I guess that the thought of doing a sound healing makes me a little bit happy. Not as happy as if the beach were to be re-opened. But that’s unlikely.

I am happy that my peace lilies have got new flowers coming up. I’ve thinned them back and fertilized them. I have also been tending to my herb garden and some big plants in my front yard. I’ve begun to learn how pleasurable it is to watch things grow and to take care of them, and see them thrive.

I am happy with the weather here. It’s 84° with a very balmy tropical breeze blowing as I sit here on the deck. There are large puffy clouds floating across the blue sky. I am very happy that I have an outdoor space here. A place to look at my healthy plants, watch the geckos race up and down and across the deck rails, as well as up and down the banyan tree roots. And squirrels, running along the tops of the fences. A place where I can sit, and contemplate the trees. Large live oaks, their branches reaching horizontally across the yard and rooftops. The palm trees gently waving above me. I can hear the birds singing. Once in awhile I hear neighbors talking, even though it’s not often, it does somehow bring me back to a semblance of what life was like before.

Before……boy, that word in this context sure conjures up some visuals, and many many thoughts of what was before, and how we took it for granted.

It seems like the first couple of weeks were not hard. Novel, like the virus, new to us. We all talked to each other on the phone, our tribe, musician friends of mine were posting mini-shows of singing for us all. Restaurants in town that were trying to stay open were giving away food, really good food, just trying to lift our spirits. Then John Prine died from the virus. He owned a home here, a block from the beach. Most of the musicians in town who have been here a long time knew him. I guess once in awhile he used to show up at the open mics when he was hanging out here. So since the news that he was in the hospital, any videos put up have been of my friends singing his songs. I am almost ashamed to admit I didn’t know anything about him until I moved here. Nominated for 11 Grammy’s, winning two. A wonderful musician and songwriter. Very sad he was taken by the virus.

But back to the first couple weeks being not so hard. Enjoyable, really. And, I have to admit, it’s not hard. I feel for people in the cities, who live on top of one another, and there’s nowhere to go except to stay in their apartments. I am beginning to really miss going out for a glass of wine, to see my friends play, or going over to each other’s houses. Going out for a pizza, or fish tacos, or going to the beach for a couple hours, just to hear the waves lap the shore. I’ve been trying to walk every day. I walk a few blocks to a place called the Tangerine Greenway. It’s just some green space in town, about a half-mile in length, with a walking path running through it, and some wetlands that have egret, ibis and sometimes heron in it, when it’s wet. Which it’s not because we haven’t had rain since the beginning of February. The weather wizards say we are in for thunderstorms next week, every day. I suppose it will be welcome, and it won’t rain all day anyway. It rarely does that here. The sun will be out between the dark clouds.

My back has been giving me a lot of trouble lately, and I like to walk on the greenway because there are benches along the walking path, so I can sit down and stretch it back out. Yesterday and today it was really hurting me, so today before I went I put it on ice, and then hooked up my TENS unit and walked with that on. It is remarkably better now, so I’m glad I did it. I intend to keep using the TENS until I have no more pain. So there’s another thing I’m happy about, that my back is feeling much better.

I’m happy for the people who are in my life. I had 2 of my neighbors, a married couple, and my BFF here on Tuesday. I put all 4 of my deck chairs and the table on the ground out back (after completely sanitizing everything) so we could maintain our social distancing. They all brought their own drinks and food, and we just sat and talked from 6 to 8 feet apart for the afternoon. We are going to try to do it once a week, it kind of helps remind us of our real lives which we will someday return to.

I keep reading memes that say, normal is not where we want to go back to. Normal wasn’t working. Collectively, I guess that’s true. But I am inclined to feel like my own life was working ok. It could use a little tweaking, but I have a happy, retired life here, and I’d really like to get back to it. Chair yoga, sound baths on the beach, hanging out with friends while other friends entertain us. We who don’t perform are the “clappers” and we endeavor to do it well!

I hope all of you are doing your best to thrive during this strange and difficult time. Love and light to all of you.

3 responses to “Searching for Happiness

  1. I’m reading a lot of things you are happy about here. I do miss going to the beach when my allergies act up, but I like the quieter life since I lean toward introversion. Best wishes with the virtual sound healing. I’m sure you can do it.

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