The world has stopped. I have, too. My priorities these days are rest and sleep. I do the must do(s). Then I add on a thing or two if I comfortably can. I haven’t been a very restful person, always striving for improvement. I’ve never strived for more stuff, money, status but I work hard at being a better person, being more productive, etc. I haven’t been a very quiet person either. It’s a funny thing to say, when as a child my adults complain that I don’t talk enough. But being a nurse and working with the public, I picked up the gift of gab. Retirement hasn’t changed that. Talking is exhausting sometimes.

It’s good to stop, dropping all that stuff on my shoulders. Good enough is good enough. Rest and sleep are musts for my immune system. I can’t afford to fall into anxiety and/or depression. I’ve given up my  one Wonder Woman act and golden lasso. I get help wherever and whenever offered.

It’s Good Friday. I wish I could say I feel the holiness of it, but I can only sense the eeriness. God feels absent. We have to work through this ourselves, together. I see Jesus on the cross. I see him hanging on the wall. Did God sent his only begotten son down on earth to guide us? Does He love us that much? Can we be saved? Do I have enough faith?

I have learned not to ask the why of things. I try not to take anything personally. It is hard though. The whys of what is happening to me and to the world. They play their tunes in my head. It is exhausting, adding to the stress and anxiety of the everyday life. Locked down, in quarantine, social distancing, whatever mode we are in – life still has to be lived. Yesterday was hard. Another checkup for my mother at the Eye Center in the hospital. 3 months of shingles and its complications.

I am more stressed and anxious over my mother’s illness than the Coronavirus. I’ve lived and worked through the HIV and SARS crises. Though stressful and scary, I did have some control by wearing protective equipment and being cautious. With my mother’s illness, I have no control. I take her for medical attention and being with her. I wonder often if I’ve done a good job though I did the best I could. The rest was all on her. I cannot take over any of her pain and suffering. I cannot take over anyone else’s pain and suffering. We must each carry our own.

If there are any answeres to the many whys floating in my head, it is to teach me resilence and boundaries. It is to teach me I am not all powerful. I cannot fix everything. In these days, I am learning to survive. I am my own life raft. I need to throw off everything except what I need to stay afloat. Faith is my oar. I will light my candles again tonight.



  1. What are the candles for? Is it “I will do the church thing just because Maybe, just maybe they are right about Jesus being sent to die on the cross. Might as well cover all the bases”. When East Meets West, there might just be a different way of looking at how to be saved. What happens after we are saved and of course, why are we here in the first place? So I ask, what are the candles for?

    1. I’m not quite sure how to answer the question but I did see Jesus on the cross when I was in Halifax, Nova Scotia around the summer of 2003. I was staying at Mount St. Vincent University and was touring the campus. There’s a big cross on top of the Mother House and I saw Jesus on the cross. I felt the warmth of his arms around me. Everything was so quiet and still but I heard the sound of a lawnmower. I am not a religious person at all. I did get baptised into the Catholic Church after that. But I’m not what you call a practicing Catholic. But I must have that spirit or faith in me. I started lighting the candles for my mother and myself when she came down with shingles. I prayed for strength for both us to weather the pain and stress. And I asked my prayer group to pray for us also. I’ve been lighting the candles every night since in prayer for all in need and our planet. I pray for our goodness and our health. The act of lighting the candles resets me. I do get discouraged and lose heart and that gets me out of it. I’m a strange combo of East and West. I believe in the Tao and Buddha. I like to be a mystic without a monastery that Caroline Myss talks about. A long answer that is not an answer.

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