Monday, February 22, 2016

Meeting life with joy, or why do we blame ourselves?

Did you see the video of the 106-year-old woman dancing at the White House with the president and first lady? She was gleeful and so spry, said she’d always wanted to come to the White House and more recently to meet the Obamas. Now she was there in honor of Black History Month. Obviously, both the president and first lady delighted in her company, and one thing I must say to all his critics, from videos we see of him with the beyond-elderly and the very young, he is a man of compassion, grace, and love for humanity.

I on the other hand spent too much of the day having a pity party. It is now four days since I had the stomach virus, and the music lingers on. Saturday I felt great, last night with eight people for supper, I lost my starch—my neighbor came over to pull the barbecue, and Jordan, Susan, and Subie did the dishes. I ate but not much. This morning I woke feeling awful, got myself together once I got up and had a good and productive morning. But this afternoon and evening, my starch has gone again. One thing I know about a virus—it can linger and make you very tired.

But I also spent the day beating myself up mentally for giving in. I should, I thought, find the joy in life. It was all my fault for letting stomach issues get in my way. I should rise above. I also thought at times it was a sign of aging. I decided irrationally that my blog chronicle of the year would be of the year I aged—when in truth I’ve done so much else and really had a good year (I’m counting the year from my July birthday to the next, so it’s more than half over). Yes, I’ve had some health problems, and yes, I’ve probably lost some mobility but I’m working on improving it. And I don’t think my brain or my attitude have aged, so I’m going to ride out this pesky pestilence and stop blaming myself. I think it’s a trap we all fall into—blaming ourselves for things beyond our control.

Don’t mean to give the idea that I have the TV on all day, but sometimes I do most of the day with the sound muted, and tonight The Biggest Loser is on. I may not be in good shape, but I’m closer than some of the contestants. They are an inspiration to make me work harder at staying healthy and active. My resolve: back to Yoga. And stop feeling guilty.

Tomorrow is a new day.

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