by Eileen Ciezki

You are reading this in the month of May and I have had to write this in mid-April, in the midst of “Safer at Home.”  This is a time of fear, worry, sadness, grief, hardship.  But we just celebrated Passover and Easter— both fitting promises for these hard times we are all in together worldwide:   the promise of being set free and the miracle of new life.  Faith and/or metaphor bring solace in times like these. 

There are many other bringers of solace:  The Riverwest Food Pantry;   the restaurants that are open for food delivery or pick-up;  neighbors grocery shopping for neighbors.  Most Riverwest  Elders are retired and on fixed incomes.  Protected from a loss of income, many are donating dollars to help our Riverwest Pantry , the Hunger Task Force and MacCanon Brown’s Homeless Sanctuary  provide food for the unemployed  and struggling families .

Riverwest Elders has a google group where messages, greetings, information, requests can be shared with members who have on line capability. For those who don’t,  phone calls are being made to keep in touch.   Old school media and social media are serving as the great connectors  to ease  our boredom and worry  with  movies, special COVID19 programs,  musical videos and comedy routines. 

Very delightful is The Tonight Show: At Home Edition with Jimmy Fallon, his two daughters and wife—lots of it seems to be ad lib!  The Jazz Gallery OWL program is using Riverwest Radio, 104.1 to feature the Wednesday and Thursday  guests.

Many are still reeling from the WI and U.S. Supreme Courts’  inhumane decisions leading to the in-person voting  in Wisconsin in a pandemic on April 7.   Thousands of  patriotic Milwaukee citizens braved the dangers to exercise their RIGHT to vote and are now wondering if they will come down with the virus! And we can never say often enough  ” Our Deepest Gratitude” to all the hospital workers who are caring  for our brothers and sisters who are the victims of COVID-19.

Isn’t it truly moving and consoling to see  how many people are doing their part to care for  family and strangers  in this time of pandemic!?

With a lot more time on my hands, here’s a list I created for wellness during this time of uncertainty and restriction:  

Daily ABCs

  • An apple a day
  • Breathe deeply — in, hold, out (x5) — five times daily
  • Call someone you love so they can hear your voice and you can hear theirs
  • Drink lots of water to keep hydrated
  • Elevate your feet, sit back and relax
  • Feed your hungers in moderation
  • Give something to someone else — a smile, clothes, a ride, a donation
  • Hold in hand a creature or object of nature
  • Investigate an object, idea, creature for at least five minutes
  • Jumping jacks (up and down) — 10 times
  • Keep your cool when angry or frustrated
  • Live and love with relish
  • Make something — amends, a meal, art, a poem
  • Nurture [TLC] yourself, another human or a creature
  • Open your eyes or your heart to a new person or idea
  • Pick up a piece of liter
  • Quiet time — in meditation, with music, out in nature, etc.
  • Read a poem, an article, fiction or non-fiction, a Facebook post
  • Standup every 20 minutes
  • Toil at some task(s) for a good part of the day
  • Use your gifts and talents to bring happiness to yourself and others
  • Value yourself, gifts and talents
  • Walk for a steady 30 minutes
  • Xpress gratitude to your higher power, self, one other and nature
  • Yearn for something you can work to achieve/realize
  • Zzzzz’s—make sure you get enough

                                            Art by Tea Krulos

Make sure you get enough