This is the blog post that I had planned for Thursday, if only I hadn’t fallen asleep first…
On Thursday morning, I was doing last-minute writing, finishing an article about a Disney on Ice skater for my local newspaper, the Island Dispatch. It was an interesting, inspiring story of a man who has been a soldier, an actor, a director, and an ice skater. He was 28 years old when he strapped on his first pair of ice skates, and he has managed to be a professional skater for years. Ice skating has opened new world to him. He’s visited 84 countries and all 50 states and has found that he has grown in new ways through his travels. He says that, if you really want to do something, go ahead and do it. All you have to do is to put forth the effort and, you never know, dreams can come true. He is amazing. His own story is as magical as the stories that he and the rest of the skaters present on ice.
Once my article was finished, I emailed it to my editor…
I needed to go to a meeting, but the meeting was canceled, so I got ready to go to the newspaper office to help with the proofreading. So I got on a bus…
and I stopped at the bank to take care of a bit of business. That plywood covers a hole that used to be a window until it was hit by bomb cyclone-force winds on either December 23rd or December 24th. I’m not sure when. That was when the bomb cyclone blizzard struck and shut everything down. Those were the two days that I spent looking out the window at the snow that was falling sideways and listening to the howling wind and knowing that it was unlikely that I would ever become a Professional Storm Chaser.
And I walked to the newspaper office in this crunchy, slidey snow…
I sit down at my desk and I proofread two newspapers. I like editing and proofreading so I am happy to be here, doing what I do. I get to read a variety of different things, including articles about mental health. Apparently, two years of pandemic, plus all of the trauma that Buffalo has been through since the horrific mass shooting in the Tops supermarket in May of 2022, has taken its toll on the community. We are overwhelmed. We can’t handle much more of this trauma. One of my previous articles was about that trauma. I had interviewed the director of Youth Services at Mental Health Advocates of Western New York. His name is Karl Shallowhorn. He talked about vicarious trauma, which is something that people experience when they watch a traumatic event on television or when they hear someone recount their own trauma. It is why nurses experience burnout or something called “compassion fatigue.” It is now something that all of the Buffalo area has experienced together. There are ways of working through the pain of vicarious trauma, which include getting professional therapy, joining support groups, or engaging in such self care activities as journaling.
As a journalist, I have the opportunity to learn so much. And to realize that there is so much that I don’t know, which helps to keep me humble.
With the proofreading finished, it’s time to go to my next activity, which is a circuit training class at the MOG (Medically Oriented Gym). I was offered a ride there, which I happily accepted. I arrived early enough to be able to spend 25 minutes on the rowing machine before the class began.
In a circuit training class, there are eight different exercises/activities. They include exercises for flexibility, weightlifting activities, and core work. There are eight people in the group. You do the group of eight exercises four times altogether. After each group of eight, you take a break, which I call my “water break” because that’s when I drink water and relax before it’s time to move on to the next group of eight. After we finish doing four groups of eight (four circults), it’s time to wipe down the equipment and then to stretch before getting ready to go home.
When I was a kid in school, I did not enjoy gym class. The gym was loud and echoey and my ears hurt. The emphasis was on ball sports and I wasn’t good at them. When the teacher-appointed team captains chose the members of their teams for whatever ball sport we were playing that day, I was always the last to be chosen. I felt clumsy and like a failure that no one wanted. Fast forward many years, and here I am in the gym, doing exercise and feeling good about it.
It’s time to go home.
I am grateful to Paul for driving me home. It is good to be home at the end of a long and busy day.
I eat a light dinner and read stuff on social media and crochet.
The sun has set of the world and on me, too. It’s time to sleep. It’s been a good day, and I’m tired.
Tomorrow, I will share the second “A Day in the Life of Alice,” which chronicles a weekend experience.