I think nostalgia is a dangerous thing.
Wikipedia defines nostalgia as "yearning for the past, often in idealized form". That pretty much defines what my life has been for the last year - yearning for the "idealized" part of my past.
I know all the cliches.
Life is about changes. Nothing stays the same. We all change. When life sends you lemons, make lemonade. I know all that! But when I think about the past - and it is idealized I recently discovered - I can't help but be nostalgic for what I preceive to have lost.
Even if it was not as good as I remember, I would like maybe one of these back.
A time when:
- My husband had his full eye sight and could drive. We could hike and enjoy the outdoors.
- Mom was able to think and function on her own. She didn't need a caregiver.
- Broken family relationships were whole.
- I wasn't pre-diabetic.
- My grand-dog meathead wasn't epileptic.
- I vacationed and spent holidays with my extended family.
- I could sleep through the night without interruption.
Of course, nostalgia steals from me the wonderful things I have now.
- My husband still has sight.
- We have a happy and healthy marriage despite the extreme pressures of the past year.
- My mom is still alive and living with me.
- I have a wonderful family generally - better than most despite recent losses.
- I have my health.
- My adult kids are part of my life. They are successful and happy.
- I have friends and family that have been there for me ... and not just when things are going well.
- Meathead's seizures are finally - after many years - controlled with meds.
- My son is engaged to be married to a beautiful and caring woman who fits our family perfectly.
- I have more wonderful bullets here - than in my nostalgic first list.
The word nostalgia has a nice homey feel to the ear. But when the emotion of nostalgia is examined under the microscope, it is an emotion that puts you at a disadvantage. It takes rather than gives. It is only good when looking in photo albums, not in living your life.
So my mantra?
Wanting what you cannot have from the past (or the future) - is bad. Focus on the now - and enjoy it!
I work on that every single day.