It’s the day after Memorial Day and we have all said thank you to our vets. Now what? Let’s not make this a three-day weekend and just go back to work. Granted, Memorial Day is a celebration of those who lost their life in service to our country. But everyday can and should be Veteran’s Day.
Many still suffer from mental illness that is a direct result of their service. Often, these vets self-medicate with drugs and alcohol resulting in lost jobs, ruined families, and homelessness – for the vets and their families. It’s easy to hit Share when a cool post comes along. So, let’s put those Thanks into action. There are several organizations in Toledo that offer help to veterans. Personally, I volunteer for Adams House. Their contract with the VA provides recovery to veterans in addition to others with drug and alcohol issues. There are also 1 Matters (1matters.org), any homeless shelter, and the VA. Add any others you know about. Can you offer an hour a month to help a vet get in contact with the help they need, take him or her to a doctor’s appointment, or just talk – especially if you are a veteran? You understand as few others can.
If each of us provides just one drop in the bucket, it will overflow in no time.
A friend (male) made one of those “you women” comments the other day. “You women must get up at 3:14 in the morning to make rules for men – like, when men pay for something the cashier gives the change to the woman and men can’t wear socks with sandals.”
Well, my friend, first, we don’t get up at 3:14 – we haven’t been to bed yet. That’s because there is still another load of laundry to finish, the kids lunches need to be packed, and the two dozen chocolate chip cookies for cub scouts are still in the oven. So, now that the TV is turned off and we can think in peace and quiet, we realize that you’ve started wearing socks with your sandals and you look like a dork. What happened to the days when you were trying to impress me? Yes, I know, they are in the same drawer as my sexy lingerie.
So – my solution is this: if you do the f-ing laundry, I can get to bed earlier. Thus, no rules. Sounds good to me, but I suspect most men will just tolerate the rules…
I had to concentrate on the ‘Holiness in the Air’ a great deal the last few days. We just lost a friend to cancer, another has entered hospice, and a third is in Intensive Care and has a 50/50 chance of living. These are all people who are 10+ years older than me, so fear of my own mortality is only slightly on the rise. I’ve heard those older than me say they have moved to the era where they are losing their friends and their world keeps getting smaller. Yikes! I never want to be in that position. That’s one of the things I liked about working at a university; I was surrounded by people of all ages. I enjoyed listening to the ‘adults’ around me. “Why can’t they pull their pants up? What idiot pierces their tongue (nose, navel, eyebrow)?” It reminded me of my mother’s comments years ago. “Turn that music down. I buy you perfectly good clothes. Why do you wear bluejeans? Tell him to get a haircut; he looks like a slob.” I thought I was so unique, but every generation has that rebellious stage. It’s how we separate from our parents.
So, here I am with deep holes in my life left by those who have bid me good-bye. But, my world isn’t smaller. Soon, I will realize that those deep holes are just nesting places for Heidi, Mary, Cathy, Sheryl, Melanie, Kent, John, and so many more. I am a very lucky woman who has the coolest life on the planet.