What I mean to say, my dears, is that I am somewhat bemused by the world and its quirky little challenges.
Of course the teacher at the weekly Buddhist meditation class I attend would remind me that it is not the world, of course, but my mind interpreting it. I obviously choose to live in a state of confusion. I’m not sure what that tells you about me, but there it is. Buddhists have been around a long time so I’m sure they know what they are talking about.
The particular bemusement of the moment relates to the fact that as my life improves I seem to be getting more and more stressed. Funny indeed, EBL! You funny old girl.
It goes like this.
I am not currently depressed. Of itself, this is highly unusual and represents a much-desired goal. Who would want to be depressed? But in a way I am not sure what is left of me when you take that old black dog away.
Over the busy summer the family has celebrated a number of achievements. All of the Offspringses now have permanent jobs – at least, as permanent as any job can be. They all have found places to live, which makes us all happy as we generally are of the opinion that living at home with one’s parents is not the way to go. We all need to live our own lives. And we enjoy time together as a treat.
My mother has deteriorated, it is true, but she moved into residential care. And once over the shock has been enjoying herself immensely. Recently she has had to go into hospital to have her toe amputated due to diabetes-related lack of circulation. This is not good news, of course, but she is in that happy state of mind where it is not distressing her, because she doesn’t know what is going on. She does like the fact that she is fussed and coddled and made many cups of tea. The NHS runs on tea, naturally, and it is what makes the system the best in the world: tea, free at the point of delivery.
I am struggling to cope with all the changes. A house to myself and Sigoth, no need to be home to feed other people; space for a study after years of balancing paperwork on laps and coffee tables and the floor; space for my burgeoning stash of wool; free time to go out to see friends or get involved in new activities; a lie in on Saturday morning. All good of course, but all change. And as we know, all change is loss, even change for the better.
I am also facing the loss of my mother. While she is doing quite well, any operation is risky and she is really quite frail nowadays. She may not be the mother I knew as a child, but nevertheless she is my mother, for better or worse, in sickness or in health.
So I am stressed.
I am a funny old thing. So much wealth can cause me so much confusion.
If all change is loss, as I think it is, what are the changes that cause you the most bepuzzlement? How do you make sense of it all? Really, it would help me to know!
Meanwhile I’ll carry on meditating and perhaps if the Buddhist teacher says it often enough, I might finally understand how my mind deludes me.