Is it possible to truly appreciate joy in life…

without having experienced her sorrow?

Is it possible to relish in her happiness…

unless we’ve also felt her woe?


Doesn’t all life have its peaks and valleys…

its pleasure and its pain?

For what is it that makes the flowers beautiful…

if not the sunshine 

and the rain?


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Her life was not an easy one…it was filled with misfortune…heartache…and pain…but every time she’d fall…she’d pick herself up again.


She’d brush herself off…take a deep breath…then stand tall…all the while her optimism never wavered…and she never lost her smile.


I asked her one day, “How do you do it? How do you keep from feeling low? Is there a secret to your happiness…if so…I’d like to know.”


“The answer for me is simple.” She said. “Nothing too extreme…the key to my happiness has always been…my ability to dream.”


“When life hands me a disappointment…when I lose my self-esteem…when one dream fails…or has been broken…I dream another dream.”


“And when a dream has ended…good or bad…I take a moment to rejoice…or cry…then I remind myself there are as many dreams…as there are stars up in the sky.”


“Then I choose another star to dream on…and if that dream leads to scars…I look up to the heavens…and I choose another star.”


“I dream another dream.” She said. “And if another day I’m lucky enough to make it through…I stop and take a moment to count how many dreams I’ve made came true.”


Her life ended as all ours will and though I still think it unfair…remembering her words I chose not to live in my despair.


Instead I dream of the moment we will meet again…Hey! It is easier than it seems…to follow her advice…to dream another dream.


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I would like to talk about the coronavirus which has caused so many of us to agonize

I will stay away from politics except to say…it has made some people act unwise.


Instead I would like to stay closer to home…after all home is where I’ve had to be

and talk instead how this coronavirus has been effecting me.


This pandemic has seized many things we used to take for granted and put them out of reach…

On the plus side we have spent more time in our kayaks and on walks along the beach.


I haven’t enjoyed wearing a mask…living in this kind of artificial bubble.

but if one person is saved because I wear it…it’s totally worth the trouble.


I’ve hated social distancing…I miss hugging…for goodness sake

I even attended a Zoom birthday party where I could only see the cake!


The wear and tear on our car is better…since we only travel to the store.

and my hands as well as my jeans and shorts have been washed more than ever before.


This pandemic has stopped us from going to the movies…

something we used to do religiously…

Apparently now we’ll watch anything…even the Tiger King…that’s showing on TV.


We are exercising, doing more puzzles and reading…mysteries, novels…almanacs

anything to keep us healthy and our minds sharp as a tack.


Because this pandemic has effected our memory…

for instance…any show we watched when this pandemic began…you know…way back when.

we’ve already forgotten what happens in them and so we get to watch them again and again!


Deborah says it’s not the pandemic…we’re just getting old…but her theory I must poo-poo

I’d rather look at all my faults…and blame them on the flu.


Forget where I put my glasses…walk into a room and can’t remember why…

have difficulty getting out of a chair…feeling a little less spry…


These have nothing to do with old age..I believe it’s academic

when it comes to problems such as these…I blame them on the pandemic.


And I’ve noticed Deborah doesn’t laugh at my jokes as much as she used to…

It’ can’t be that I’m not as funny…and I hate to start another unfounded rumor

but apparently this pandemic can effect a person’s sense of humor!


In conclusion as we are experiencing something in our lifetime 

we’ve never experienced before…

I know this coronavirus will win its share of battles…

but we’re determined to win the war.

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There are times when I’ve looked in the mirror and thought

certain parts of me I’d like to undo them

but the older I get the more I realize

it’s all in how I view them.


When I see how old my face looks…

I could lament my wrinkles and my scars…

or rejoice in the knowledge that I’ve been blessed

to have made it in life…this far.


I could lament that I wear glasses

that my vision’s not crisp and clean…

or rejoice knowing with my glasses

all the beautiful things I’ve seen.


I’ve seen our children and grandchildren grow up

I’ve seen nature’s beauty all around me

and everywhere I look

I see how my family’s love surrounds me,


I could look in the mirror at my ears 

and lament their enormous shape and size

or rejoice that with these ears

I have heard our babies’ cries.


These ears have heard all kinds of music, 

our children’s and grandchildren’s first words

They’ve heard every sound from a lion’s roar

to the chirping of the birds.


Besides…when I stop and think about it…

when everything is done…and everything’s been said

If I didn’t have these big ears…

how would I attach my glasses to my head?


So the next time I look in the mirror

and see all my different parts that seem defective…

I’ll turn around and try looking again


this time from a new perspective

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For many years she walked

hands close by her side

wishing she was more like the birds

wishing upon the wind she could glide


For many years she walked

never venturing too high

until the day she spread her wings

and realized…


she could fly.

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“What do you want to be when you grow up?” Her parents asked…

“A bird!” she said with glee.

“I want to glide across the sky 

I want to play up in the trees.”


“Well, come on,” they said each grabbing one hand…

without ever asking why...

“We have a lot of work to do…


if we’re going to teach you how to fly.”

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The older I get the more and more I become aware

that when you stop to look at little things…there’s always magic there.


Yesterday we walked the Appalachian trail…

not the entire trail

no, our walk was incomplete

I estimate we actually walked about three hundred feet.


But in the little bit we hiked much to our surprise

we saw flowers, trees and mushrooms and a host of butterflies.


Once down from the trail we hit the white water…actually we didn’t pick up an oar.

We watched, as other people braved the rapids, from the safety of the shore.


But we climbed on rocks, we skipped stones…and with the river running fast

as the rafters cleared the final hurdle we cheered them when they passed.


We waved at a train, talked to people we didn’t know, felt a cool breeze in our hair, watched insects crawl among the rocks as we were sitting there.


We stopped to have a picnic…picking up hot boiled peanuts along the way.

We drove home the Blue Ridge Parkway…pausing to enjoy the beauty of the day.


When we returned to the cabin…

after a morning where so many little things fell into our laps

We took a little time…and took a little nap.


Later in the evening…seated in our rocking chairs

we watched the sun set and the moon rise…as the sound of crickets filled the air.


And I had to smile as I sat in the rocker thinking of all we happened to see 

as I was one again reminded of how big the little things can be.


And how important, it is…after a week like we’ve had in our country,

where sorrow has reigned as king…

in the midst of a sadness so big


to look for happiness in little things.

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He said, “Hey Mom I wish I had a super power!”

His mom said…”But you do!

of all the people in this world


no one else…is you!”

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They were on the edge of hopelessness…their dream…not going as they planned

until they happened on a little purple flower growing in the sand…


And they began to hope again…believing their dream…within their reach


when they saw a little purple flower growing on the beach.

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