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With Love, Hope, and Perseverance

SoCS: A Year of Challenge and Hope for Healing

45 Comments

Our Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “day/week/month/year.” Linda also invites us to write about the past year of pandemic, “how we have coped or not, to share our common experiences as a way to connect, to feel a little less alone.”

As a citizen of the United States, these past 12 months have been heavy, not just due to the pandemic, but also with the political divide and the racial injustice of the murders of George Floyd, Breaonna Taylor and others. It has been strange and confusing to have stay at home orders, masks and social distancing recommendations along with protests and demonstrations.

My hope is that with the pandemic calming down and someone less inflammatory at the helm, we can move into healing. It’s going to take a lot of work. A lot of compassion, listening, compromise, and seeking common ground… or higher ground.

I find myself feeling tired as I write this. There are bursts of energy when things get done, but maybe it’s a tired that comes with age. Still, my personal life has not been bad. I’m the oldest one in my family – my parents and siblings are deceased. Even Aunt Ruth in Wisconsin crossed over last year after a full life into her 90s. I am thankful not to have to worry about my parents anymore and feel for those who do. I am thankful to have the luxury of time and the freedom to study my father’s letters from Vietnam, and to write and paint.

Staying at home doesn’t bother me, except that I have not seen my granddaughter, son and daughter in law since October. I miss the mountains. It was in October that I last visited the mountains and first brought mama cat home from the church. She has kept me company when David is at his woodshop, and she has become much less feral.

Mama Cat has a plate of food.
She wants attention while I’m trying to write.

Having a cat has been a big change after being a dog person for so long. The pandemic and people not being at church much was one of two factors that led me to bringing her home. The other factor was the abduction of her daughter, Gray, in June. I still go to the church once per week to see if Gray has shone up, but I don’t think this is likely. I talk to Saint Francis and pray my hopes and thanksgivings.

St. Francis with last year’s hydrangeas

Not going to church and choir practice is probably the biggest change in my personal life. We do zoom church and I’ve sung and played a little guitar for that, because music is my favorite part of church. My voice is way out of shape when it comes to singing anything challenging. My friend Anne, who is in her 80s and teaches singing, is helping me with that. I’m thankful to have had both vaccines, in spite of the side effects, I’m glad to have a little more confidence if I do want to go out. I’ll still wear a mask and avoid crowds.

Hopefully we won’t have as much to protest or demonstrate for or against for a while. Maybe things will calm down and justice will grow. Maybe we humans will wake up, bridge the divides, and focus on healing Mother Earth as we celebrate diversity in all it’s beauty and strength.

Thank you to our host, Linda Hill for the consistency of SoCS through the year.

For SoCS rules and more streams, visit:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS March 13, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)

Author: JoAnna

An open minded, tree-hugging Jesus follower, former counselor, and life-long lover of animals, I'm returning to my creative roots and have published my first book: Trust the Timing, A Memoir of Finding Love Again as well as the short version: From Loneliness to Love.

45 thoughts on “SoCS: A Year of Challenge and Hope for Healing

  1. Love your sign

  2. I enjoyed this post, JoAnna. Love the signs, photo of the cat. Hope you make it to the mountains for the spring flowers! Take care! ❤

    • Thanks, Cheryl. I need to get Mama Cat familiar with a petsitter before I go to the mountains, and I am hoping to get there by spring! Have a good weekend! ❤

  3. A great post JoeAnna thank you for sharing 💜💜

  4. Mama cat is beautiful! I’m glad she is adjusting to her forever home, finding the good life in being warm and well-fed.

    Not attending church has also been one of my biggest changes in the last year. They have been allowing some people in with strict guidelines, but I continue to stream the service at home and connect with others in a chat room. It’s not the same, though, as being there, seeing my peeps and joining in with worship. Fortunately, our ladies study group meets online every other week, and that gives us the opportunity to have a conversation.

    Stay safe, JoAnna, and I hope you get to see your family by summer or early fall.

    • Thanks, Mary. I’m glad we’ve found ways to connect with people. Computers can be frustrating but they have been very useful through these challenges. You stay safe, too. Keep enjoying retirement!

  5. I love the signs you featured.

  6. Both of the signs featured in your post say it all. I’m holding onto hope that we re-enter the worldly affairs of life with a new consciousness of our interconnections with each other and Mother Earth that makes our lives possible.

    • Well said, Rosaliene. I’m holding on to that hope too, for “a new consciousness of our interconnections with each other and Mother Earth.”

  7. Mama Cat is very pretty! She looks like she’s adapted to being an inside kitty.

  8. Your signs capture the essence of human decency. Thanks for sharing them with us today.

  9. I like your sign. And mama cat is pretty and looks sweet. It is good your church has the sense to have remote services and choir. You are all doing your community a big service but not becoming a super-spreader event.

    • I’m glad you like the sign. Yes, my church has been careful. We met for Christmas Eve with masks and social distancing, but mostly we’ve been on zoom. Mama Cat has joined me on the couch as I type this. 🙂

  10. We who don’t mind being at home are the luckiest generation at the moment

  11. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and experiences of this challenging year. I appreciate all the positive signs you shared.

    Mama Cat reminds me of my husband’s cat when he was growing up. Her name was Funny Face and she was best friends with the family pony Johnny Ringo.

  12. Beautiful thoughts, my friend. Yes, it has been a very tough year in so many ways, but hopefully we’re on the road that will bring about change, albeit not as quickly as we would like. I love the sign the little girls is holding in the first picture, and also the yard sign in the last pic. And Mama Cat is a beauty!!! Our five are driving us nuts these days … perhaps it’s spring fever! Have a great week ahead, and thanks for sharing your thoughts, making me smile a bit.

  13. What a year!! I agree with so much that you have written here, JoAnna! I, too, have a feeling of gratefulness that both my parents were not here for this year. I have thought about that and at first thought it was a little strange…to actually be happy they are gone. But then I knew it wasn’t happy that they are gone…just happy that they did not have the experience of this last year. It would have been really hard to navigate the last year of my mom’s life if it happened during 2020!
    Anyway…there is so much that “feels” better…and yet it is sad to know that everything that was noisy and in your face still exists. I think that was one of the hardest things for me to handle last year…that I had to come to the realization that there is really bad things OUT THERE! Actually, it is people who do really bad things because of their fear…and while I can’t get behind most of it…I have to have empathy that they think they are right!!
    I have not gotten the vaccine yet…I think our governor will lower the age soon. But as I write this I feel I am getting a sore throat…and it is all I can do to not freak out!! We were going to take our first trip in over a year the end of this week…and that feels a little weird too…it’s almost like I have become a little agoraphobic!!
    Sending you lots of love and light…<3

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