“At a standstill” is a phrase not often used these days. Probably because in todays’ frenetic lifestyles so few of us have that luxury. Of course, we retired people do have the ability and opportunity of stopping, standing still and actually smelling the roses. Even so, we often don’t, and our lives become just a little fragmented, sometimes even frenetic, especially like now, towards the end of the year.
Of course, we also know that it’s not a good idea to be still and inactive for lengthy periods; that could adversely affect our heart, our circulation, muscles, and our sagging bits! And, anyway, we need a bit of mental and physical activity to stir us up occasionally. Mind you, a few periods of peace and tranquillity are always welcome. I certainly take my fair share of that stillness and serenity because I find it hard to believe, at our age, that too much of a good thing is bad for us!
Luckily, I am still able to do my fair share of walking and other activities. And, like many of my friends I’ve learned to find solace in my singularity. Although we might at times yearn for companionship, even when walking, the exercise is certainly beneficial. It has the added bonus of imbuing a sense of tranquillity as we seek to settle our sometimes-turbulent minds.
Being part of a family is great, and it is their love that “makes the medicine go down.” But when I sometimes feel lonely there is an extraordinary comfort to be found in the company of our contemporaries, and I treasure the contact and care of my single friends with a similar mindset, many of whom are now residing in care and, while I’m still able to drive safely, I enjoy visiting them.
But, let’s face it, as I become older, I do become forgetful of many things. Even though my eyesight is good, sometimes, my old mind can recall only fragments of my earlier life. It’s as though they are different shaped pieces of a disrupted jigsaw puzzle! At present I am still able to see the whole picture on the lid of that imaginary box, despite it being a bit blurry.
And I mostly recognise those funny-shaped little pieces inside the box of my mind. However, where they all fit…well it’s not easy for me most times. How much more difficult, even impossible, it is for those folk like my late wife Dorothy with Alzheimer’s, when even the box-top view is obscured!
We are indeed privileged if we can identify all the pieces of our life’s puzzle. Maybe they are scattered and disconnected, perhaps some are neatly slotted together, or we can recognise where pieces have been lost. We are even more blessed if we can fit most of the little fragments together and enjoy a sort of overview of the whole picture.
I’m happy that I live in a country where I can still see and enjoy the blurry picture on the lid of my life-box, and I praise God for the blessing of happy memories of life’s big picture, made up of so many bits from times past.
As we approach the end of this year my wish for you, my reader, is that you will rejoice in your happy memories at Christmas time, and that your journey in the New Year will be a happy one – and that you, too, might joyously rummage through the pieces of your own personal life-puzzle!
I’m looking forward to the New Year and hope to add some more notes…. How about you subscribe? – Just scroll to the spot over there on the right and cheer me up!