A Little Peace Please!

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A woman walking her dog.Spring is fast approaching, and I am still having a hard time accepting and embracing the promise of a new and better year. In 2022, there’s no fresh slate to start with but rather a big tangled mess of stale feelings.

So what’s good about this year so far?

Maybe only that the days have grown longer by almost an hour? Or that February was a very short winter month, and warmer weather HAS to be around the corner?

In reality, we all know the answer to that question, the same one we had for 2020 and 2021– not too many things are good so far. 

Perhaps we need to hang on to the constants in our lives, something as simple as the weather and being in the company of our loved ones.

We need to properly grieve those who had to leave us, those whose absence darkened the lives of so many families, also leaving an indelible mark on the global count of lives lost. 

COVID intruded on my family too this year, tragically taking the lives of two beloved uncles. My heart and soul are so sorrowfully broken! Taking proper precautions just wasn’t good enough, and we can only resort to comforting ourselves by accepting it was their destiny, such a potent force no one can mess with. 

But an even more powerful force is our resilience, collectively, as members of the human race. The hopelessness, resentment, and the rawest kind of sadness hit hard, but it’s all slowly absorbed because most people are hopeful that things will eventually get better by nature.

This whole struggle is usually internal, not apparent to the rest of the world, and sometimes not even to your loved ones. But it silently carries us through the difficult days that take us to the happy, carefree ones; however few and far between they might seem. 

The only difference lately is that this internal struggle is common amongst more people than ever before, considering the state of the world. And it’s voiced more. And I found the voice I needed to hear just around the corner from my house, and I’m so grateful for it.

By now, almost all of us have taken our holiday lights down or at least have turned them off. But there’s always a handful of homeowners who have resisted and still have a string or two of lights up just because. Several houses away, one of my neighbors has white lights near the front door and a beautiful multi-colored peace sign hanging from a big tree close to the road. 

It might have been there all of last year, but I didn’t notice it. This year, it caught my eye after the holidays were over and has since become so meaningful, an endearing routine of my daily life. Most days, I’m in and out, usually staying local, focused on my to-do list. 

And occasionally, as we all do, I stop and wonder how the hell did we get here? There’s our daily string of family strife, some things so hard to change and overcome, and on a global scale recently, there’s the unspeakable. 

Yet despite everything, when I’m driving home, I pass this colorful peace sign, and my soul lights up. It’s a symbol like it’s hung up there just for me, reminding me there is hope for creating lasting peace and serenity in my household, in the world we live in, at some point in our lifetime.

Unknowingly (or most likely knowingly?), my neighbor’s gesture has become for me and probably for others, a beacon of hope that a little peace in our world is possible! And I’m hoping the peace sign stays up, reminding us all there are always countless things to be grateful for, despite the difficult times we are living through!

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Fran was born, raised, married, and still lives in Mount Kisco, NY. She has four kids, including a teenage daughter and two precious grandsons, whom she babysits a couple of days a week. She also works part-time as an accounting clerk, helps run her husband’s excavation business, and lastly aspires to finish writing her book one day. Despite her crazy, busy schedule, she cooks almost every night for her big family and tries her best to keep up with the dishes! She truly believes spontaneity is the spice of life, and sometimes the very unexpected happens, but it’s usually all for the best. Enjoy her many tales of raising kids over 20 years; what an amazing journey!

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