The hospice nurse says my mother no longer experiences time in the same way most people do. Do you think it might be contagious?
Never before in my life have I messed anything up because of the beginning of Daylight Savings Time. Last Sunday, I was getting ready to go to church. I happened to look down at my phone and noticed it said the time was an hour later than I thought it was. I wondered what was wrong with my phone. As it turns out, nothing.
I went to church, still operating firmly in Eastern Standard Time despite all iPhone indications to the contrary. I thought I was arriving early for Sunday School and was surprised at how full the parking lot already was. I noticed some folks going into the church and wondered at that. By Terri Time, it was just about an hour before the service was to start and people usually don’t arrive that early. Finally, out of nowhere (or, maybe, out of the numerous hints that my brain was consuming but apparently not digesting very quickly), I realized that Daylight Savings Time might just have started at 2:00 o’clock that morning.
So, I did not have a spring forward this year. It was more like a stumble forward. Maybe I was actually pushed directly into the path of an oncoming time change. I think there might be a message for me in this.
I think I may have become a little stuck in flux during this past season. Is that an oxymoron? Can one be “stuck” if one is in a state of “flux?” All I know is that I think my brain has been wallowing in some sort of disagreeable sludge ever since my mom had her stroke. I have become used to living in a nearly constant mood of sadness, anxiety, fear, and inadequacy. It has become a comfortable ooze, if not a pleasant one. I tend to sink deeper into it rather than exerting the effort to lumber out of it. Yes, this whole journey started back in the last Daylight Savings Time. Theoretically, I’ve had a couple of time changes to adapt to my new circumstances. I’m not sure my transmission is that good, though. It tends to slip. Given my sinister slide into the emotional muck, I’d say I had no trouble at all “falling back.”
Now that spring is here (whether I sprung with it or not), it might be a good time to recognize and acknowledge new birth. There has been a lot of growing inside me recently. I’ve graduated from my perception that retirement is simply well-earned rest. I’m now seeing how retirement can and should be enriching, as well as restful. More than two years after my move, I have started thinking of Florida as “home.” It no longer feels disloyal to prefer my life in Florida to what I was experiencing back in California. I believe I have learned more about myself in the past two years than in the prior 30 plus “career” years put together. The best news about that self-education is that I am figuring out how to appreciate myself. I’m not saying that I am all that and a bag of chips, but I think I can now safely say that I am at least the bag of chips.
In addition to recognizing and acknowledging the new beginnings I’ve birthed since my retirement, spring seems a good time to nurture the seedlings that are beginning to sprout for other changes. I know I’ll never be okay with my mother’s condition, but I do sometimes feel the stirrings of acceptance and reconciliation. This spring, I want to be a gardener. I want to tend to my mother’s heart- to fill it with beautiful flowers and plants and lovely scents to remind her how much she is loved. I also want to tend my own heart- to heal it and love it and remind it of how much I love.
Is spring growing season for you? Any particular “gardening” you are planning for this year? Please share your perspective by leaving a comment. In the alternative, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Happy almost spring!