OPINION

GOOD MORNING: Letting go and catching on

Jerrie Whiteley
Herald Democrat
Jerrie Whiteley / Herald Democrat

I spent most of last weekend re watching "Grey's Anatomy" from the start. I have not watched it in years, but I heard it might be ending and I have watched everything else available on the Internet. 

I stopped watching all hospital related shows about ten years ago when my mom started needing to spend copious amounts of time in them. Before that, I had been a big fan. I watched every episode of "ER" and several others that came and went between "ER" and "Grey's." I loved the characters, though I was never really very interested in the medical side of the show.

Then when I watched my own family members be patients in hospitals, the romance of those shows fell away for me.

So there I was this weekend watching "Grey's" and realizing that while it was basically a soap opera, it really was so much more. Mixed in with all of the who is sleeping with who and how do they miraculously save most of their patients, there are little nuggets of real wisdom. I think the show is deeper than it pretends or maybe the pain medicine (over the counter) I was taking for my back spasms lulled me into believing I was seeing more than I thought I was.

One of the things that really struck home with me was a scene in which two of the main characters talked about what happens when everyone whose hand you have been holding throughout out your life lets go. Some of them let go because their time runs out and they move on to whatever is beyond here. Some of them let go because they out grow the need to have their hand held. Some just move on to the next portion of their lives.

But what about that empty hand or room or hours of the day. The show said, and I am struggling to learn, that when there is no longer anyone holding onto your hand for leadership and protection or even love you are left with free hand. And it is up to you to figure out what you are supposed to do with it now. 

Maybe that means you should get back to an old hobby or find a new one. Or maybe you should figure out a way to put that energy toward the community in some way that you would have never had time to do in the past. 

We spend our lives, many of us, taking care of other people. So it is a shock to us when we look up one day and those people are all gone in one way or another. And suddenly we have time to figure out how to take care of ourselves. 

They used to call it a midlife crisis, I think. I prefer to think of it as a graduation of sorts. We did the things we were supposed to do and now it is time to figure out the things we want to do. Different people reach these stages at different times and some people go through them a number of times. 

Some have hit this time period as the wold struggled through a pandemic. We baked bread, we made blankets out of huge pieces of string. OK, other people did that. I haven't baked any bread or finger knitted any giant throws.

But now that the weather is clearing and warming, I am looking forward to see what where my free time wanders in this new season of renewal.