Wednesday 25 December 2013

Christmas 2013: I have options

Usually around Christmas, all of us probably sent out emails or cards to people we may not see on a regular basis. It is our opportunity to reconnect.

Yesterday, I put together a short and hopefully amusing retelling of the ice storm and how I had been without electricity for 3 days. I fire this off to various friends and relatives. I like to shoot for a little commiseration and a few chuckles.

A friend I don't see all that often, maybe once a year, writes back that it's good to hear from me and has 2013 been quite the year for him and his wife. He says there have been ups and downs such as his son losing his wife. I look at the word "losing". Oh, oh. This isn't good. I ask if he's talking about divorce or death. He writes back death. Apparently this woman accidentally clipped a pickup truck on the highway, lost control, and went straight into a pole. She died instantly. I wrote to my friend that I was very, very sorry about his daughter-in-law then added in the grand schemes of things, I had nothing to complain about.

The area gets hit by an ice storm and I go without power for now, going on four days. My office is a few blocks from where I live and the building has never been without power. I sleep at my apartment but I spend my time at the office with a frig of my food, a micro-wave, and Internet access. I can shower at the gym around the corner. I am without power but I have options.

Last year, I suffer the worst physical injury of my life that saw me locked up in my apartment for almost five months in pain twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. It's eighteen months later and I'm much, much better thank you very much but I realise I'm going to have to contend with certain limitations for the rest of my life. However, I've talked with other people.

Years after their original injury, some people are still taking pain medication. I only had to take it for four months and a bit. People have required surgery to correct their problem. I didn't need it. Some people have had to have one or more vertebrae fused. While the option was brought up in my case, it turns out my body managed to heal itself.

Today, I keep a regular schedule of working out every two days at a gym. I'm not 20-years-old but I am determined to be the best I can be. I have options.

An acquaintance who is self-employed writes about the precariousness of her financial situation. I have a full-time job. I have options.

A member of my family tells me about the mortgage on his house and how it is sometimes difficult to make ends meet. I rent an apartment, a monthly amount which is a fraction of his mortgage. I have options.

As I come up to the end of the year, I make a series of charitable donations: The United Way, The Cancer Society, and The Daily Bread Foodbank. Yes, I get a tax receipt which counts for something but I am donating and that counts for something. I can afford to do this. I can afford to give something back. I have options.

As I write this, I am sitting in my office. It is day four of being without power. Okay, this may seem like an odd way of spending Christmas, but this has become my new norm for Christmas day: by myself. (Year #4 post divorce) Time to reflect, write, and catch up on things. This afternoon, I'm planning to work out at the gym (Wow, even they are open today) and this evening, I'm going to the flicks. I'm alone but I'm not lonely.

I have options.


my blog: The Great Ice Storm of 2013
Merry Christmas. Ho, ho, ho. Or is that ha, ha, ha? Never mind a white Christmas; it looks like we're going to have a black Christmas or at least a dark one.

my blog: Christmas 2012: Home Alone 3 - Dec 25/2012
Traditions change: death and divorce. ... Christmas number three represents my new tradition: another day devoted to me... Sound sad? It's not. As odd as it seems, I am enjoying the peace and quiet. I have at times enjoyed the holiday hubbub but right now I'm enjoying the freedom from tradition. Yes, I sometimes get nostalgic but one has to come back to that Zen master stuff (or is it bulls**t?) and move on. You have to enjoy life right now as it is, for what it is. After all, what else exists? Is the glass half full or is it half empty? Heck, it's the only glass I got!

my blog: Health: One Year Later, One Year Lost - Apr 18/2013
April 7, 2012, this is the red letter day in my personal annals marking the worst physical injury of my entire life. At the one year anniversary, I am much much better, thank you very much, but I am still trying to climb out of the hole and still have a way to go.

my blog: Edge what walk are you crazy? - Sep 28/2012

my blog: Jet Pack: Move Over James Bond - Jul 12/2013

my blog: My bungee jump in two words: Oh... my... God... - Oct 12/2013


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