Small (and large) comforts see me through.

I had my second corneal transplant yesterday. My left eye seems to be progressing at about the same rate as the right one did back in February.photo(2) I’m not one to quote the Bible but I can’t help thinking about the verses in 1st Corinthians 13 about first seeing dimly and then seeing clearly. I could hardly see through the haze at all yesterday. Today I’m seeing better, though still through a veil. In a few days, if I progress as I hope to, I will see clearly.

This is nothing short of miraculous. I find myself feeling tremendously grateful to the donors who cared enough about others to make their organs available in the event of their demise. It’s a generous and forward-thinking and liberal act.

And it’s impossible to appreciate the donors without thinking and wondering about the families and friends they have left behind. I don’t need to meet them but I wish I were able to send a thank-you note for this remarkable gift that is my much-improved sight. I thank you most kindly.

Also, to my family and friends who so graciously give your time and love and transportation in order to make my way easier, I give you my thanks and my love.

And I mustn’t forget Lulu aka Baby who snuggles with me and comforts me when there’s no one else here to do it.photo(18)

Christmas, 2013.

Another Christmas has come and gone and I think I’m doing okay.photo  It’s been seven years since D asked for a divorce.  This is the sixth Christmas I’ve spent as a woman alone.  Someone commented recently on my blogger friend’s post that there’s a great deal of difference between being alone and being lonely.  I’m a bit of an expert on the topic because I’ve been both.

I’m happy to report that this year, except for a couple of brief hours on Christmas Eve afternoon, I was merely alone, not lonely.  The lonely times are becoming shorter and shorter as I learn that being alone can be a blessing if I choose to make it so.

I think it’s all about acceptance of what is.  My mantra has become “It is what it is.”  I can often shrug off troubles by photo-4repeating this simple truism a time or two.  I admit it doesn’t work all the time but it helps.  I’ve learned to do when I start to feel lonely.

Paul Newman once said that he was able to deal with his son’s death only by doing for others.  His words gave me fresh perspective about how I was living my life.  I’ve become more conscious of others, especially around Christmas. I’ve finally figured out that it doesn’t have to be complicated. It can be as simple as making toffee for friends and family.  (See photo above.)  Or taking a few seconds to text or email a friend who’s having a hard time.  Or a phone call. For me it’s taking a moment to think beyond myself and my concerns.

That’s easier said than done when you’re in the middle of the pain of rejection.photo-2 You can’t figure out who you are, let alone what you should or want to do.  I cried for months. I’m glad that’s over. I’m ever so slowly learning to trust other people again.  But I step cautiously.

As usual this post has taken a different direction than I expected.  Sometimes I think my fingers divorce my brain.  Or maybe my fingers tell my brain what to think.  I’m not sure what happens.

I started out expecting to tell you Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy Chanukah, Happy Kwanza and Happy New Year.  The photo below shows Santa riding past my house on the Pineville fire engine.  You can see his arm.  The rest of him is blocked by a weird-looking little green elf.  Only in the American South.  Made my day.photo-3