March 6 our small group formed at the Crossing church, Batavia met for what we did not know was the last time for the foreseeable future. I shared with them some of what I had written in my journal while dealing with depression regarding a family member.
“I did not realize that depression had gotten her drivers license! Depression drove me to Dairy Queen; next day depression drove me to the donut store. Depression is driving me to places that I do not usually want to go. They say depression is anger turned inward, but this depression is more like feelings of hopelessness and helplessness. … Donuts and ice cream will not help. I know that is true. The girl-child within me is seeking comfort. The sweets of this world will never bring deliverance from troubles.”
And then the next news was corona virus. At the grocery store hand sanitizer was long since gone. I wanted the Hawaiian buns that were on sale in the ad. I could not find them! As I approached the checkout lines I saw a man with a really full cart. On top were the Hawaiian buns. I asked where he found them. I retraced my steps and there they were. I walked away thinking, “Well, if there is chance of quarantine we can at least have a Hawaiian bun!” then as I strolled down the frozen food aisle, I grabbed the Pepperidge Farm frozen Coconut cake that Bob said I should have bought earlier. And, of course, I spotted the Klondike chocolate ice cream chocolate covered bars that I had a craving for a week or two earlier. Suddenly, I realized, “Oh great! Now fear is pushing and filling my shopping cart!”
We have finished that cake, but would not refuse another one! There are one or two Klondike bars left. We have sat, like the rest of the country watching this horror unfold. I have been too numb to write until today.
Sunday, our church had an online service. It was great encouragement. I cut a few daffodils to take a neighbor whom I have never felt an affinity towards. As we hollered across the yards Saturday she mentioned how much she loves our flowers. Today I cut her a bouquet. Like a child of years past, I rang her doorbell, knocked, and left the vase on her porch. She was thrilled. I went for a walk in the sunshine afterwards. There was a bluebird at the end of one cul-de-sac. I was enchanted.
I am reminded again that we can choose our attitude in this and every other crisis. There is SO MUCH we cannot control and never had control over in the first place. So I am returning to the book by Tara Brach entitled “Radical Acceptance.” I will be quoting her the next few days and trying to bring cheer to you from this corner of Ohio.