12 days and counting…

14 May

I AM A VILLAGER.  Sort of.

I’m happy in this wonderful house.  I LOVE riding around in the golf cart.  I am encouraged by the people who dance in the square, especially the little woman with the Dowager Hump who line dances with a huge smile on her face and the tall man with the walker who dances around the outer circle of the square, also smiling as he does.  The redheaded cranes that visit the back yard of the house where I live every day enthrall me.  Today a pair of them arrived with a baby crane, its head not yet red.  I saw a snake glistening as it slithered in the morning sun, like a ribbon of silver, along the ridge of a water retention pond which tonight after the rain, finally we had rain, was at least 4 inches deep.  A few days ago, we had the first rain in weeks and the cranes, yes; I’m back on the cranes again, landed out back and made the most joyful noise, vocal clapping is what it sounded like to me.  I love living in The Villages.

And the truth is, it isn’t living in this place that is the reason.  IT IS ME.  I’ve changed.  I HAVE DECIDED TO BE HAPPY.  My financial situation hasn’t changed, although there is a light at the end of a tunnel.  It’s a LONG, LONG tunnel, but I have some HOPE about the immediate future.

Tonight I watched the season finale of Grey’s Anatomy and, just like in that TV show, where they have themes that intertwine with one another, where the characters find enlightenment as a result of this or that patient speaking about his or her own realizations, just like in the TV show I also had a breakthrough.  I SEE that it doesn’t matter what “trauma” I experience, whether it be financial, health, relationship, the reality is that I CAN CHOOSE TO BE untraumatized.   Is that even a word?

I may have lost a dear friend, someone who came to my aid when I arrived here in Lady Lake.  Someone who liked me and who wanted to help me, someone who mentored me for a time.  Time is precious.  And when there is not enough time to spread around, when the need to survive is greater than the need to be a friend, there are consequences and relationships sometimes come to an end.  I am sad for the people in our lives who don’t know that we care, who think that because we don’t have the time to spend with them, that we don’t care.  I have commitments, of all kinds, that I cannot possibly attend to…and, just like the panic and the dread that comes and goes when I spend too much time contemplating the reality of my current situation…I feel pain surrounding the loss of this relationship.  There is an email that goes around which talks about how some people come into your life for a season, for a reason.  It talks about how some relationships last for years, some for weeks, and some for a few days or hours.  We are told that these relationships are simply the pieces of “the fabric of our lives” to borrow a phrase from a TV commercial.  We give each other strength, hope and companionship while we are walking the same path.  Then, when the time is over, we go our separate ways and fondly, or perhaps not, we may occasionally have moments where we mourn the loss, or celebrate the time spent.  Right now, I can only hope that the anger, disappointment or whatever sentiment remains for my friend, I hope that it is fleeting and quickly replaced by something better.

I have responsibilities to attend to tonight and so I will close now and get to work.   From the outward appearances, I am a Villager.  It makes me wonder how many of the people who live here are just like me.  This place is called an adult playground, and while we dance under the stars every night when it is not freezing or sweltering or raining, we are still human beings facing the challenges of life, children who are ill or who behave badly, parents who are sick or afraid for some reason or another, even the simple things like termites or crabgrass.  We keep on participating in life, some of us riding in golf carts and some sitting in front of the TV, whatever we might be choosing to do, we keep participating.

And life goes on.  Whether I am a Villager or not.  Being contented is a choice.  Focusing on what makes one happy is a choice.  The “rest of it” is still there and still playing a part, but being happy, in spite of anything…that is the key.

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