August and Summertime Blues

August is one of my least favourite months. Although I prefer bright skies to grey ones, I am  eager to start new projects and to plan new trips.  I have always considered September to be a month of new beginnings and August feels to me like "back to school time"…a time of waiting.

I read the book years ago but it was a hit with the group.

I am feeling satisfied with the book group that I started among our residents. This week, we had a full group of readers who enjoyed The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith. Many of our members are over 75 and  they all had positive impressions of the novel. It seems that a light read and an evening outing  that is close to home and over by 8:00 pm. is just perfect. I have lots of ideas about how we can create some new activities for both young and old (er) residents in our community.

I went to Weight Watchers this week and after my 4 pound loss last week, was only down half a pound.  I guess 4.5 pounds in 3 weeks is a reasonable weight loss but I do get a bit impatient. There seems to be a theme of impatience running through this post. The theme of this week's WW lecture was "small changes that lead to bigger changes." Since joining WW 3 weeks ago, I have stopped drinking wine at home. I still enjoy it while I am out but I am not buying it for at home consumption. My systolic (the top number) blood pressure reading has dropped 30 points! With only a 4.5 pound weight loss! Since my return from Europe, I have stopped taking anti-depressants (with my doctor's approval) and I may soon be "prescription-free".

Ten years ago, we married.

This August will mark our tenth wedding anniversary. We have been in a relationship since 1986 but only married 10 years ago. It is not an easy marriage but we knew that it wouldn't be back in 2004. For me, companionship, commitment and caring are very important. My husband tends to frequently lose sight of the bigger picture. He often places more importance on his individual activities than on his responsibilities to the household. I am not sure whether this is part of the mood disorder or not. If I want to continue to be in this marriage, I require the strength and self-esteem to carry on with my own life without feeling sorry for myself.

One of my friends has just borrowed a library book called Living  Your Unlived Life  by Jerry M. Ruhl. Her 60th birthday is in August and we were thinking about what our "unlived" life really means. "Woulda, coulda….." Interestingly, the computer wants to replace the term with "unloved" life. Since I have been retired, I have been living more of the aspirations of my youth. I write and I live abroad for part of the year. I have just enrolled in a Continuing Education class about the process of creating a children's picture book. When I was younger, I believed in the power of the individual to create peaceful social change. I am trying to do that through the church and in my housing complex.

I would have enjoyed a long happy marriage and perhaps a second child but those things are impossible. Grandchildren are indeed a missing piece in the puzzle. I loved being a mum and Daughter can attest to my enthusiasm. I could volunteer to read stories to children and I am proposing a Trick-or-Treat in the recreation complex this Hallowe'en. I may go back to Oaxaca in the new year and volunteer with Libros para Pueblos.

Back to the present, it's August. I'm off to Curly Hair Vancouver for a trim and I will probably do a little browsing in the Yaletown area of Vancouver. I don't go downtown very often now so it will be a fun day. Have a lovely, sunny week-end.


  1. I can't help but be impressed by how tuned in and bright you are. Even when you relate situations in your life that are challenging (a diplomatic word), you already know the fundamentals -- you know what's going on. I admire that. The state of your marriage bothers you, clearly -- as it would, probably, most women. But here's a thought beyond the 'hey, nothing's perfect' . . . it is freedom to pursue what you love, even if your husband is not interested. I know, the reality is that no married couple wants to split up activities too much, because who knows what might happen -- BUT there is only so much life and how you spend yours is up to you. Where that balance falls, only you can know.

    Needless to say, JMO. Your rational approach to it all continues to be a great example to everyone.

    1. It seems that each of us needs to figure out our lives. I love my husband very much but he is a bipolar man who is limited in making meaningful connection with others. I am often at a loss...

    2. The older I get, the more I think that we all are limited in what we are capable of with others (honestly capable of). Sometimes I wonder if the difference between young and older is that now we might see that. At least for me, youthful ignorance might have been bliss -- if unproductive, LOL. Sigh. Life ain't easy, let alone love.

  2. I bookmarked your blog after my first visit to it. You have a refreshing point of view!

    1. Hi. Maggie. It's funny because I just learned the word "diaconate". I'm not certain where life is leading me but I am trying to understand it.


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