I am weary

I am weary
I am weary

I’m not sure about anyone else, but I am weary.

“Oh, I am very weary, Though tears no longer flow; My eyes are tired of weeping, My heart is sick of woe.” Anne Bronte

A friend posted a question on Facebook the other day. “Is it me, or is Facebook not fun anymore?”

To answer the question, no, it’s not you.

For the past few years, what used to be a fun way to reconnect has been anything but fun. It has been nothing but a constant barrage of political pain. A soul-sucking, life-draining experience. I even had someone remark that I hadn’t been on Facebook much lately. That’s true. It has mentally worn me out.

I think most people felt that no matter who won the election, the crazy would finally be over. Hah! Anything but. In my opinion, it is worse.

I am weary.

I can’t even count the number of people I talk to who are exhausted. It doesn’t matter the age, gender or economic status. Sleep seems to elude everyone.

I was chalking it up to hot flashes in the middle of the night, or too much coffee during the day, or too much on my to-do list. The lack of sleep had been affecting me on all levels – to include my writing (or lack thereof) and other creative endeavors.

But I think it is more. I think it is the constant negativity on social media, at social gatherings and on the news.

I am weary.

All the bickering and fighting about rights and who’s right is getting us absolutely nowhere. Nothing is positive is happening. Families are divided, friends are no longer friends.

I long for the days on social media where someone’s bowl oatmeal was filling my news feed.

While I appreciate people taking a stand, I have to wonder what that stand is doing. Is it changing anything for the better? Or is it furthering the divide?

Recent examples are the women’s marches and the pro-life marches. Who did it help? Did everyone attending these protests accomplish anything other than “solidarity” for their cause and drive a wedge even deeper?

I think of the time and money spent on these public displays. Could it have been spent better?

You won’t find me marching or protesting. First, my knees would not cooperate. But on a more serious and important level, I personally feel that my time, money and talents can be used for something more.

If you can spend time and money knitting protest caps, maybe you can use that same energy to knit chemo caps for cancer patients.

If you can spend time and money marching for life, maybe you can use that same time and money to buy and deliver diapers, layettes and formula to a pregnancy resource center.

If you can spend time and money marching for immigrants at an airport, maybe you can go to an intake organization for these people and donate furniture and clothing to those who arrive here with a suitcase and no provisions.

If we have a passion for what we protest for, then we need to also take care of the people with our actions.

If we have a passion for what we protest for, then we need to also take care of the people with our actions. Click To Tweet

It doesn’t matter what our politics are, because in the end, we are all people with opinions and the resources to make life better for others.

I think about the thousands and thousands of people at the recent protests who could have come together and filled the pantries at local food banks, served meals at homeless shelters, delivered food to homebound seniors, pulled weeds in a community garden or bought gift cards for groceries for a struggling family in their neighborhood.

For me, the only thing positive that has come from this continuous battle of the wills to be right instead of being the change, is to remind myself that I need to do more to make my corner of the world a better place. And I have already started to make that change.

The only way to heal this country is to start small. Like the old cliché poem of “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time,” that is the only way we can start to come together. One person doing one small thing for another person. That is all it takes.

So, I ask of you, friend or foe, can we put the politics aside and put the barbs down? Can we work together? Can we be respectful of one another, whether we agree with each other or not? If we work side-by-side, we just might realize that we are more alike than different. Then we can work together on effectively tackling other issues.

And then, maybe then, we won’t feel so weary.

© Lynne Cobb – 2017

Are you feeling weary? Share in the comment section. Please be respectful of others.

 

 

On friendship and letting go

clouds

For the past few days, I have purposely limited the time I have spent on social media. My boycott started out innocently enough – it was a beautiful day to be outside, planting flowers and pulling weeds. Good for the body, mind and soul.

A day to appreciate all of God’s creation – well, except for the spiders I encountered while weeding.

When I heard about the tragedy in Orlando, I jumped back online to see what had happened; what the latest updates were. Saddened and horrified, I felt sick to my stomach, just as I did on September 11, 2001.

Continue reading “On friendship and letting go”

I am one ticked off military spouse

military photo

“Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” John 15:13

The topper on the latest, most-blatant disrespect of our military members has enraged me beyond belief.

How could something as shameful as denying immediate survivor benefits to the families of deceased military families have happened? And yet it did, to the families of the service members who died in the line of duty since the government shutdown.

Blame it on the government shutdown? Really? How on earth did this happen to these families?

How much more political game-playing has to happen before this nonsense ends? Why must the military continue to be used as pawns in a stalemated, government chess game?

First of all, the description of our “all-volunteer military” is grossly inaccurate. Volunteer does not mean “free.” What it means is that someone’s husband, wife, son, daughter, brother, sister, grandchild, niece or nephew has answered the call of defending our country, and is willing to lay their life on the line so that someone else doesn’t have to. It means that our country doesn’t have a draft to pull people into the military. It means that someone felt the call to defend our country and uphold the constitution of the United States of America. It means while they are training, defending, performing first aid and going without sleep, someone else can attend college or trade school or live a normal life.

It means that they are defending their fellow citizens’ right to free speech, as ugly as that speech can be at times. It means that people can go to the mall on weekends, or attend a sporting event or sit with a six-pack and watch a game on the weekend. It means that others can be in attendance of their child’s birth, wedding, or graduation. It means that people can gather for holidays and family events – all while our service members miss these opportunities and miss milestones in their families’ lives, making sure that other’s lives are not interrupted. It means that the personal dedication of each one that takes the oath makes our military more professional, because they choose to be there – it is not forced.

Our service member’s families are displaced with frequent moves and deployment rotations that occur more often than some people rotate their tires. The families also serve, by supporting their service member.

As a madder-than-heck military spouse, I have had it with political games played at the expense of our military. There should not be a fear that payday won’t arrive, that benefits and retirement are in jeopardy, that commissaries and libraries close to make a political point. And above all, a grieving family should never, ever, be shut out from survivor benefits to make a point. Words can’t even describe the sick feeling that overwhelmed me when this news broke. What does that say about our nation? Is this how we say thanks?

It disgusts me how our service members and veterans are treated by our government and our country. Injured military members have to wait on a broken system to receive treatment. The jobless rate for veterans is deplorable. Why? Are employers fearful of post-traumatic stress disorder? Fearful of hiring someone who could be deployed again?

And the stereotypes of military families and their spouses are grossly unjust and mean-spirited. Military spouses are considered lazy whiners. Entitlement and discount seekers. Really? Do you know how hard it is to sustain a career when moving every few years? Or work, run a household and raise children under the stress of a deployment? There is never a moment of peace for a military spouse, they know the danger their loved ones face. Should we be left to wonder if our spouse’s pay will be on time, and, here’s the kicker – whether it is correct? Should our service members have that “no pay” worry on their heads while they dodge IEDs and bullets? Do you think that maybe spouses are not whining, but raising legitimate concerns and complaints, hoping our leaders will hear them?

If this nonsense continues, who is going to step up and join the military? And for those who are currently up for reenlistment – will we lose them and their much needed skills? Is this how we thank those that put the uniform on every day – and I mean every day?

It is time for our President, Senate and Congress to act like leaders and stop using the military every time there is a budget crisis. Negotiate – it is your job. It doesn’t matter what side of the political fence you are on. Someone needs to step up with an olive branch, negotiate and start resolving these issues.

It is time for citizens of this nation to realize what our military does – and why. They aren’t out there because they like war. In fact, if you asked them, they would prefer to keep the peace here at home. But they are out there anyway, risking their lives and missing out on time with their families so that others don’t. They serve for the greater good.

They know the risks of their jobs, and are willing to continue on, despite what our leaders do – or don’t do. Our military deserves better than what they have been getting lately. And so do their families, especially those who mourn the loss of their hero, who gave the ultimate sacrifice.

© Lynne Cobb – 2013