Passing Through Difficult Times

I have been thinking. Yes, I’m afraid so. But it can happen! Here we all are in this beautiful world and (I hope!) slowly emerging from the pandemic. But it isn’t the first one that has occurred, as there have been quite a few others. There are some who still question whether this one was real, but there are many who do not believe things unless they see it for themselves. I have no doubt that all will be revealed in due time, scholars will look back giving us all logical answers to these ideas. Some focus their minds on such global issues, whilst others prefer to concentrate on other things like a favourite sport. No matter what it is, whether it be nature, world politics, formula one motor racing, golf, soccer or whatever I am sure that changes will occur. It may only be to do with transfers between all the various clubs and teams in various sports, but things do get sorted out with rule changes, with new ideas, new technology and new designs. As I have said quite a few times to folk now, the one constant in this Universe is change. I now spend a bit of time looking at the messages people send in online to various websites and I do wonder if a few have either skipped school or did not think through their questions before posting them. What I do like to see are the replies, as for the most part these are done in quite a positive way and not patronising. Sharing knowledge and truth is important and I am trying to do what I can with that. It isn’t an easy time for anyone, but whatever the circumstances I have tried to maintain a positive outlook on my life by remembering the past, not dwelling on it but trying to learn from it. As I wrote on Facebook the other day, some things in our world remain the same whilst other things are constantly changing. Coping with this adds to the pages in our individual book of life. We should not be repeatedly turning back these pages and re-reading them, but remembering they are there and using them for reference when necessary. That is how we learn and develop. Staying focussed in the present enables us to look forward into the future, but sadly there are some who, for a variety of reasons, are either unwilling or unable to let go of the past or learn from their past experiences. There have even been those who expect the world to change for them, rather than adapting, learning to compromise even just a tiny amount and in recent years I have known a few folk exactly like that. I am saddened by such selfish attitudes, no matter how they have developed. I wrote last year about learning to cope and the same is still all true. We adapt, we change, even if it is for a short while until present circumstances alter. But we do not forget who we are. Where I am now is the perfect place for me right now but things change and we survive by adapting. I am alive, I am being very well looked after and I appreciate that very much. But I am still me, I am not losing my individuality, I still retain whatever it is that makes me who I am. Perhaps one of the hardest things to adapt to though are the changes in routines, the ones we are comfortable with. Some folk like the comfort of their surroundings, they like being with the same people, animals as well as collectibles and they can find it difficult to adapt to the smallest of changes, even for just a short time.

Then there is the actual passage of time. Though of course time itself is an interesting concept. It is a constant, and yet it can seem to be a variable. When we were young, it often flew by. As I have said before, when it seemed to drag we either found or were found things to keep us busy. Except that could allow us to be led astray and into doing things that got us into trouble. Where I grew up it was a small town and my dad was a local schoolteacher, so everyone knew our family. It meant that for myself and my two elder brothers it was in our best interests for us to behave! I have said on a few occasions how I was taught to keep myself occupied and it still works for me. I have said about my enjoyment in putting together a whole range of plastic stick-together kits, usually of aircraft but I did then progress to the large sailing ships. Some manufacturers put two aircraft together, calling them ‘dogfight doubles’ and in this way I learned about the aircraft types in both World Wars. It was a clever way to learn about the past, but remembering also that time is always moving forward. My writings have recalled past memories of things perhaps long forgotten, both for me and others. I realise there are those who prefer to forget times long since past but those memories too are part of what makes us who we are. I was once married but am long since divorced. I can still recall those years, but do not dwell on the memories, merely acknowledge them as being part of me, of my life’s history. Just so long as we are able to keep our minds clearly focussed on reality and not be drawn into fantasy, we can enjoy our lives along with our family and friends around us. To take a quote from the Bible, “When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” (~ 1 Corinthians 13:11) So I can think back to the toys I had as a child, I remember the games I played and the funny cartoons which entertained me. I learned new words through reading, I learned of humour through jokes, along with their spellings and meanings, all these things helped me in the art of conversation and good communication with others. As many of you know I am quite a Star Trek fan and I have been for a great many years, so it is fascinating to see how we as children marvelled at things like their flip-up communicators which became reality in almost no time at all. Did the idea for them come from Star Trek? Perhaps. I also see the old ‘Thunderbirds’ series and then look at the Space Shuttle. There are in this world a great many inventors, but there are also a many developers who see the original idea and adapt it. I have said about retaining our own individuality and character, but in the Star Trek science fiction series we are introduced to the Borg, whose well-known phrase when approaching another starship was “We are the Borg. Lower your shields and surrender your ships. We will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own. Your culture will adapt to service us.” I have read recently of something called a ’new world order’ but there may be some who always wish to control, to have things done their way and no other. This is not a new idea, as over the years that us humans have been on Earth, many have tried to conquer others, it just seems to be an ongoing thing. Interestingly Gene Rodenberry, the creator of Star Trek, considered that one day there would be a United Federation of Planets, with Earth as a member. He considered that on Earth there would be no wars, we would all live together in peace, helping each other. Perhaps one day we will achieve that and I hope we will, but I’ll not hold my breath on that one right now.

So how do we manage through these times? I know the difference that it has made to me being able to remain in contact with friends over the past eighteen months. Also having people around me has been and still is a blessing. Some might say not an ideal scenario, a Care Home with some inmates who have dementia, but they each have their individuality and character, even if they do present difficulties for the Carers sometimes. Dementia it seems affects folk in different ways, some more than others. I know some inmates crave attention like two-year old children, with them as the centre of the Universe and wanting everything revolving around themselves, but they are treated calmly, politely, gently but firmly and rarely do we hear any temper tantrums! For those of you on the ‘outside’ who have been unable to go to work, ways have been found around that issue and I believe many are enjoying the freedom that provides. But keeping in touch with folk is vital, as I keep saying. There are groups that meet online via ‘Zoom’ or similar, they might be sewing or knitting circles, computer clubs, I know one group who recently held their annual general meeting online as it was the only way. I have been on a few calls with the student groups that I am connected with at Leicester Medical School but we are all done now for their summer break. I am a member of a local u3a group and whilst I haven’t been doing too much with them due to my health, I am doing what I can. A friend of mine is learning a language, just as I am doing, for me it is slow going but still fun. I mentioned this in January and I am still keeping on with it! That actually pleases me as I wondered if I might lose interest, but it really does seem that the more we learn, the more we find there is to learn. It can be seen as a huge jigsaw puzzle, with seemingly unrelated pieces dropping into place and all of a sudden you see part of a picture emerging! That is how it seems to me, anyway.

On a more personal note it has been relatively hot here recently and I have not been at my best, in fact a doctor was called. I have been on a course of antibiotics, I am having soothing creams applied to the parts I cannot easily reach (well, I am in a Care Home!) and a dear friend did ask me one time if it was the soothing cream or the soothing touch as it was being applied that I enjoyed! I have not replied to her on that one!!! So I have been taking things a bit easy. It means that this week’s writing may be slightly shorter than usual, but I already have ideas for next week.

For now…
I don’t dream that often, but just remember – when you dream in colour, it’s a pigment of your imagination.

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One thought on “Passing Through Difficult Times”

  1. Hi Andy I don’t know if these actually reach you ! But thanks for sharing your wisdom and experiences . The pandemic this part of the world has not finished .The media keeps it alive !
    Take care


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