by betsy hemming, 05/02/2020, Beverly Hills, Mi

Adult Category

I have an occasional ritual of asking Alexa to play a favorite song as I float off to sleep and often it is Simon & Garfunkel’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water.”  It is such an inspiring song, from amazing musicians. In fact, I played it a few nights ago, as I struggled with our current difficult situation in our world.  And as the song ended, my mind latched on to the final words:

“Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind.”

The song concluded, Alexa was quiet, but I couldn’t get the words out of my head.  “I will ease your mind.”  I finally sighed heavily and got up to write the words down, hoping that my busy brain would cease its noise for a few hours.  And so it did.

In the early morning light, it struck me.  I will ease MY mind.  Now that was one great big thought first thing on another day of this thing called a pandemic.  And that was before my mug of vanilla chai tea, the feeding of the pets, the first quick glance at my go-to news sources.  The words, sung so beautifully, stayed center stage.  I will ease my mind.

Fortunately, I do have some positive wiring, so some of that easing already has taken place.  I am doing yoga daily, thanks to my amazing yoga instructor who offers it virtually.  I have found helpful articles on resilience and positive things happening in the most difficult of circumstances.  I love the stories of how community is collaborating to help one another, to find innovative ways to tackle enormous challenges.  I hoot with laughter at the creative humor offered by friends on Facebook.  A baby raccoon wandered by the window last night and looked in.  The cat was not amused but I got out of bed once again to say hi.

Yet the opportunity to be felled by one doozy of a news nugget can happen at any moment.  And up and down we go on the roller coaster called Coronavirus.  I’ve never cared for roller coasters and this one is a monster.  We all have that dark little voice of negativity in the recesses of our brains, and it’s paramount that we keep it at bay in times like this.  I will ease my mind.

We can try to control a few things right now. We can feed ourselves a balance of news from reputable sources.  We can acknowledge having a negative voice whispering inside and work to shut it down.  We can leverage the power of community.  I simply love how quickly our family and friends have latched on to virtual gatherings where we can see smiling faces, laugh at silly things and just be together, albeit in a different way.

Yet the roller coaster moves on. One night this week, I found spring right outside my kitchen window, after Mother Nature had enjoyed her April Fools’ fun with us once again this year. I gasped at the beauty of the blossoms and the emerging buds from the Japanese Maple in the glow of the outdoor lights. Then I made the mistake of checking the news before closing up the house for the night. It was not good. 

Settling into bed, I played “Bridge Over Troubled Water” yet again.

I will ease my mind.  Sail on silver girl.