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Natural Awakenings Rhode Island

Look for Blessings Amongst the Unknowns of Summer 2020

Jun 30, 2020 09:31AM ● By Maureen Cary

The summer has arrived and, like each year in New England, it is a time of great appreciation for the outdoors. This year it will be especially appreciated. The spring and summer of 2020 will likely be long remembered as the high bar in what disruption means to us. It can be hard, in the midst of chaos, to identify the good things but I would counter good things have come from this moment. Many families have become closer then ever, society as a whole has been forced to slow down and take a breath, cooking at home again has grown, and we have all had time to reevaluate things that are truly important to us.

Last month you may have read about my mishap with tripping and making a bit of a mess of my body. Well, I’ve gone and done it again. Just as things are starting to open up from the shut downs, it’s summer, time for beaches and playing outside. We were having a fine evening with friends when I stepped off the edge of a platform in the dark and fell 7 feet to break my ankle and wrist. And now, I’m stuck in the house again. My “always look at the bright side of life” has been a bit more challenging this time around but yes, there are bright sides. Being down two limbs has the necessary side affect of mindfulness, as it requires moving slowly and carefully as I wheel myself around the house in my office chair. Bill and I poke fun at the ridiculousness of the situation and he has learned ponytail making as part of his growth.

Being somewhat disabled does leave way too much time to watch TV. I love some of the old shows from the 60’s and 70’s. So much has changed but some of the story lines are still the same. From Mary Tyler Moore as one of the first woman to break so many stereotypes of single career woman to the sage advice from Uncle Bill on Family Affair on how to treat everyone with respect, television shows like that can make us feel good in a world where things seem so uncertain.

Our feature article this month, “Beyond Factory Farms”, is a call to action for us as a society. With everything else happening, it may be easy to lose focus on issues like the true cost of meat. Meat is an important part of the food chain but you should know the true cost to our environment and the animals that support the “cheap meat” business. We can vote with our forks by not supporting markets we don’t believe in but we must also remember to vote at both the local and national levels if we really want things to change. That is the power we all have. As we celebrate this 4th of July without so many of the fireworks, parades and celebrations we are used to, lets spend some time reflecting on the meaning of the date and consider the best way to honor it.

As we head into the summer of uncertainty, please remember each other. Humans are brilliant and we will get through this health crisis. The only question is how much damage will it do first. Each of us can do our part by wearing a mask. It helps prevent the spread more than it helps the individual wearing the mask.  This 4th of July, let’s be one United States, working together, as called out in our Declaration of Independence, for Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.