Illumination II – Choices

Daily life consists of choices. It always has. 

Now that I live under the new rules of a pandemic, my awareness of the choices I am currently making are sharper, clearer, and more conscious. 

  • After rejecting a mask, I am now choosing to wear one. 
  • In the wake of the YMCA pool closing, I am finally choosing to build an exercise regime at home.
  • After allowing many tedious tasks to languish on the back burner for years, I am now choosing to tackle them and feel good about it.  
  • As a solo ager, no spouse, no children, nowhere to go and “nothing” I have to do, I am choosing to live in flow each day and enjoying every minute of it.  (It helps if you are an introvert.)

While I am not a wealthy woman, in the last few weeks I find myself acknowledging my privilege.  As the daughter of a very thrifty mother who put herself through college during the depression, I pay all my bills each month.  I am safe in my senior residence and I am food secure. My awareness of privilege becomes more stark as the pandemic illumines the long term injustices and inequalities in other elements of our society.  Ones which I have never had to suffer.

And now, I’m receiving $1,200 from the government.

Somehow this did not seem OK…for me… right now.  I am haunted by the pictures of those standing for hours in lines around the block at food pantries.  Therefore, I am choosing to put this unexpected gift to work at the Providence Ministries Food Bank in Holyoke.  I feel better.  Who knows what other choices lie around the corner?

Another friend feels good about repurposing her “going out to eat at a restaurant” funds to a local Rescue Mission.

Another friend made a similar choice when her senior check arrived . “I don’t need it.  How can this money be more useful?” she asked herself. After some inquiries she located a Tibetan acquaintance in NYC whose daughter had an old broken down computer which didn’t give her access to her new online school arrangement. My friend’s donation solved that problem, served one child, and made the donor very happy.  

Our choices matter.

It is said, “We’re all in this together.”  Yes we are.  And everyone has some way to lend a hand. For ourselves, our children, our families, our neighbors and for our communities.

In my case, taking care of myself and honoring my own gut intuition, was strongly linked to giving something to others. 

You have more choices than you think.

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