Tag Archives: resiliency

Summer 2014

I liked this summer, when all was said and done. It wasn’t perfect; I had things I was dealing with that were taxing at times, I didn’t do anything particularly amazing, and I felt a potent sense of loss at the recent death of Robin Williams. Still, I felt like I was “in” it, you know? That I didn’t wait around for summer to start or weigh it down with a raft of expectations before it got going. I attribute this in part to a philosophical shift. Instead of waiting or hoping for an optimum this-or-that, I’m more attuned to what is right in front of me. This has nothing to do with seizing every moment or living life to the fullest or any such hoo-ha – I don’t, never have, confident I never will. More a matter of paying attention, maybe, to what is accessible to me now, and working it, if I have it in me to do so. I remind myself that whatever I may think of the present, there may come a time when I am nostalgic for it.

I find myself revisiting the theme from my older post because I’m still exploring it, seeing how it plays out in my life. This summer was a good example. It was different than I thought it might be for a couple reasons, but I liked that I adjusted, focusing on what was working, and not as much on what wasn’t. There will ALWAYS be things that aren’t “working” but maybe I see that age in and of itself has brought me a bit of resiliency. Oh, I do my share of inward (and some outward) railing… tilting at windmills, but more selectively, i.e., just because there’s a windmill, I don’t have to auto-tilt.

I suck it up more. Many a time I tell myself in response to something I don’t like or would prefer different: Tough. Not to be mean – I’m mindful of that – but realistic.

“Suck it up” and “Tough” aren’t going to be too many people’s versions of feel good mantras, but I find them useful notions. The world – my world – isn’t a place that runs ever smoothly, nary a glitch or problem in sight. There is simply nothing to be done about a lot of it, but to adjust one’s thinking, if needed, and if possible. I’m reminded of the saying that success, or something like that, is the result of continuing to get back up. That ties into resiliency for sure, continuing to try, which, in the end, is usually all you can control.

It was a good summer.

Cumulative loss

Loss comes with familiar, bad feelings, sickening feelings: Oh yes, I remember this. I hate this. Waking in the night unsettled, knowing something is wrong. And then remembering what that is. I’ve long felt grief is doled out in pieces in this way because it would be too overwhelming all at once.

In a person’s life, one loss can bleed into another till it seems as if there’s a backlog, an accumulated weight that must be dragged around. I wonder sometimes at the resiliency of the elderly who must have known so much loss of all stripes. Do they ever feel, “No, that’s just one too many? No more? Not this one?”

The alternative – shutting down, refusing to care or to love or to be moved or become invested – isn’t an appealing one. And for a lot of us, it’s an impossibility. You ask you yourself: Is it worth it? Is it worth it? For me, so far, the answer comes back, yes.