If only our world looked like this. But it doesn’t; and all of us are stressed, worried, heartsick, anxious, and you can add as many negative adjectives to the list that you would like. It is a time of trouble here in our country, and all over the world.

This isn’t new. But in the age of social media, it is everywhere: news of deaths, murders, hate, politics, war, famine, and you name it. Some people become addicted to Twitter, logging on every ten minutes, because that is how fast the news hits. I have to stop this. Others wall off social media, vowing to insulate themselves from the onslaught. I don’t know the answer.

So I read beautiful literature. I take naps. I scroll through photos of my grandchildren.  I take more Tylenol than ever before.

Friends are absolutely essential. Going out to dinner. Laughing. We ban any discussion of politics, and tell old jokes. We have dessert.

I donate to my favorite causes. That gives me a feeling that I have a little bit of power over what may happen in the world. Good grief, I write my Congressmen at least once a week. The Republican one never answers. The Democrats always do. I pin a lot of hopes on the midterm elections. My fingers hurt from being crossed.

I am looking forward to being able to light a fire in the fireplace. That is soothing. Cozy. Although my husband hates it, I like to make chili and eat in front of the fire. He likes the chili, but prefers eating in the kitchen–but he goes along.

Tea. That is another thing I look forward to in the winter. Tea and television–watching people shop for homes in foreign countries. If they are looking for a flat in Paris, I will watch that one twice.

You know those blankets that are supposed to reduce anxiety? I am thinking I might get one of those. They are supposed to be heavy. Somehow, the weight of them makes you feel as if you are in your mother’s arms, or a nest of some sort. But they ask you how much you weigh when you order one; I guess so that the blanket won’t be so heavy that it will suffocate you. But I draw the line on telling random blanket makers my weight. The data scrapers already know too much about me (thank you, Facebook).

I draw pictures. Take pictures of my cats. Look at dog videos on Instagram. Watch all the blooper reels on YouTube. Clean closets. Buy bouquets at Trader Joes. Take longer showers. Hope.

One foot in front of the other. One day at a time.

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