Screw this shit, I’ve freaking had it. Every few weeks the reports indicate that we are “trending down” on the number of cases having the COVID-19’s newest strain. Then, as soon as I start to have some faith, the numbers jump up and up. Face masks, no face masks, vaccine, no vaccine, the arguments continue. Friends ,some who don’t believe this is real, believe that it is just a way for the “government” to control the populace. “Get over it, asshole”, I boldly state.” I’m sticking to the math and the science” two subjects I hated in school.
Usually, I await until SPRING/LENT before I work on my resolutions. New Years as a time mark for reflection never made it for me as I was usually preparing for a few weeks of birthday celebrations which would have thrown most resolutions out the door. The last two years for my birthday (this year was a big 7-0) I did absolutely nothing so I WANT TO PARTY, I NEED SOME LIVE MUSIC, I WANT TO SEE MY FRIENDS AGAIN.
Spring, it is only a few weeks away folks, is the best time of the year for rebirth, rejuvenation, renewal, resurrection and regrowth. Surprisingly, after my first COVID-19 vaccination and while awaiting my soon to be life changing second shot I put myself on a journey to “reboot” my body systems as well as to check in on some relationships all in preparation of a “new normal” way of life. Oh, I still believe in the adage of “make plans and watch God laugh”,yet I boldly attempted to challenge fate and “make plans”. One only knows if any of it would have worked. But…NO…another strain and a needed booster was all we got. Yet, I persevere and will try and try again.
The ground rules are simple. The meanings are complex and can be taken a variety of ways, so I’ll explain what I am looking to do.
REBIRTH:a revival, to increase after decline
REJUVENATION: to refresh, repair, revitalize
RENEWAL: to replace something that is worn out
RESURRECTION: a resurgence,a reawakening, a return to life
REGROWTH: to grow back, to regenerate, to recover
Starting today I will look to get rid of any destructive negativity on my part as well as discounting others who might attempt to inflect ill will, either directly or indirectly toward me and/or mine while at the same time I will attempt to rebuild or strengthen positive outside relationships. That is, I want to be “the better person” not necessarily “a” better person in some relationships. I saved a great (NYT) OP-ED piece from April 6, 2021 “Our personalities are not set in stone. They are more like sand dunes”.
Olga Khazan, a science writer for The Atlantic, explains that though we may think of ourselves as unchangeable, that’s far from the truth. Scientists have found that adults can alter the five traits that make up a personality — extroversion, openness to experience, emotional stability, agreeableness and conscientiousness — within just a few months. And, as Khazan writes, “What better time for transformation than now, when no one has seen you for a year, and might have forgotten what you were like in the first place?”
Changing our personalities might also allow us to have some more fun. Khazan profiles a woman who, after losing her 29-year-old husband to cancer, has resolved to try dog-sledding and glassblowing once it’s safe to do so. These new activities will require her to become more extroverted and more open to new experiences.
Personality transformation doesn’t just help us grow as individuals, but also as fellow humans: We can emerge from our pandemic bunkers ready to treat one another with more kindness. Khazan points to the trait of agreeableness as one that involves greater empathy and concern for others. “Though the pandemic will end, its scars may take a while to heal,” she writes. “Treating people with patience and, yes, agreeableness, will help in that healing.”
Here’s to a year of fun, empathy and healing.
I only hope all that is true.
First order of business for me will be to stop or curtail responding to and/or addressing those things I disagreed with. If it’s not life threatening or truly hurtful I will attempt to let it go.Especially political discussions, religious disclosures, and people with poor musical tastes telling me what they like and why. That will be tough.
Then, I will make plans, not a “bucket list” but actual calendar dates for normal activities. Also, I will attempt to get/stay healthy. AND, I WILL RESURRECT and I WILL RECOVER.
In the last few weeks I have taken a personal inventory as well as a physical inventory of my life, my friendships, my possessions, and in doing so I immediately saw “slight” (lol) changes can and should be made. During those moments I reflected on our/my good fortune. In conversations with others ,I am learning to take the low road, to just listen, smile, and nod politely. I will try new places, new adventures, meet with friends old and new, reevaluate my finances, and expect to deal with a few unexpected situations. You’ve probably read somewhere that repetition is key to forming habits and that, on average, it takes 66 days for behavior to become automatic. I hope not. I want to do all this by GROUNG HOG DAY.
to be continued…