2016 was an interesting year. I retired and finally found my rhythm. Sometimes bad things come out of good. I developed some serious back issues but ended up doing aqua fitness four days a week. After an epidural and this exercise, I am currently pain free and have lost weight. My lesson learned is that it is not adversity that is important, but rather how we respond to it.
Our children and grandchildren are doing well in several different states. We are blessed in that regard. I marvel at how my granddaughters are growing and thriving, both now six years old and in first grade.
My Favorite Yankee at the age of 84 is healthy and active. However, he has struggled with a broken shoulder that has not healed. He is now healing from surgery and we hope we can resume our travels which we love.
I freely admit that the Presidential election shook me. I became a student of politics when I retired and was heavily invested in the outcome. I felt a great deal of fear, disappointment, and disillusionment. It helped to talk with like-minded friends and feel their support. I hope our President-elect will be successful so that our nation will be successful. What has comforted me the most was not about the election but instead a poem about response to any despair. “The Peace of Wild Things” was written by Wendell Berry, an American novelist, poet, environmental activist, cultural critic, and farmer.
The Peace of Wild Things
When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.