Day 663, The Future After the Pandemic

 
What will the future hold after the COVID-19 pandemic?  Let me start from where I am now.
 
It is already the weekend and the last weekend of the month at that.  My husband is sick again, which tends to sap my motivation.  However, I have learned the best way to get motivated is to start doing something, so I started writing this.
 

A New Heat Pump

 
We have a big job coming up next week.  After several attempts to fix it, we have determined that our condo needs a new heat pump.  The existing one is leaking water into the master bedroom closet again.  A serviceman is coming over Monday to finish the estimate, and work may begin the next day.  It depends on whether the HVAC service people can contact our building manager.  They may need a crane service to work on the top of our four-story building.
 

Medications

 
There are other concerns in my life as well.  I have done super-well staying within my calorie budget, but in the last few days, I have been gaining weight.  I suspect the culprit is my new medication:  Imipramine.  Or it could be that I need a higher dose of thyroid hormone.  Lithium depresses the thyroid, requiring me to take replacement thyroid hormone.  I have been doing that since 1992.  However, my nurse practitioner drastically lowered my dose last December, just before my weight began a long climb.  I have not succeeded in getting my primary care provider to reverse that decision.  That is one thing I hope to do in the future.
 
I do not know if my weight gain is from stress, depression, or having my thyroid hormone too low–however, those three factors all influence each other.   In the last few weeks, I took off the weight I gained at Santa Fe House.  However, now it is stalled again and going back up despite my being better than ever with my diet.  To follow the link mentioned below, click here.  Vibrancy is another name for JV Life Tracker.
 
 
[Tuesday, June 30–I finally broke the gaining streak.  I just need to hang in there.]
 

Feeling Better

 
Lest I sound like a rant, I want to acknowledge how much better I have been feeling lately.  I have still had some challenging feelings that feel like depression.  However, they have not been as paralyzing as they were in April, for instance, and at various times in the past.  I even got our taxes done this past week.  That feels good, even though we had to pay.  I am glad we had three extra months and stimulus money to help get that done.  In April, I would have been too depressed to finish the taxes.
 

Facebook

 
Today, I feel a bit scattered.  I have been on Facebook more than usual for the past three days.  Now I understand people’s complaints about it.  It can be a time and emotional sink.  You see people you have not contacted for years, and you feel so distant from them.  Do they even know who I am anymore?  Maybe some of them do not.  I remember going to Odyssey 2001 with one man and winning a dance contest as his brother’s partner.  Do they remember me?  By the way, that was when 2001 was still far into the future.  Now, it is in the distant past.  I read 1984 in high school when 1984 was still in the future.  Now, 1984 is really far in the past.
 

Future-Oriented Books

 
It is time to look to the future rather than getting stuck in the past.  I have found that everyone perceives the past differently, even when remembering the same event!  If our perception of the past is different from person to person, think of how differently we perceive the future!  My imagination of the future changes with my moods.  Despite that, I like to read books about the future.  It started with George Orwell’s 1984, Alvin Toffler’s Future Shock, Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, John Naisbitt‘s Megatrends, and more recently:
 
 
I even read part of The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable by Nassim Nicholas Taleb.  Google and Facebook are, in my estimation, black swans.  Who could have predicted what influence they would have in our lives?  There are more black swans in the future.  That is what I predict anyway.
 

Technology – More Of It In the Future

 
I remember trying a Google search for the first time back in the 1990s.  For some reason, I liked it better than the currently popular search engines of the day.  It grew to become the dominant search engine.  Microsoft has tried to do the same with Bing, but who likes Bing?  Apple, Inc. was around decades ago, but who could have predicted what the iPhone would do to our culture?  It is not really a new idea, just the mobile marriage of the computer and telephone, but wow!
 
Video has become so popular that some people hardly read anymore.  Hopefully, that does not include you, or you would not be reading my posts.  YouTube has changed virtually everyone’s lives.  Amazon Kindle has seen to it that everyone who wants to learn has plenty of material.  Amazon could also be considered a black swan.
 
I am not an economic forecaster, so do not turn to me for investment advice.  However, I recommend that you watch for future trends and sometimes remember the way things were.  Ask your parents and grandparents if you need to.  I think you can agree with me that many things have changed.
 

What Choices Can We Make in the Future?

 
In this ever-changing world, what is the best choice of a mate, a living place, transportation, or a vocation?  The computers I studied in college are obsolete now.  Most of my computer skills are outdated, as well.  Keeping up with the changes in the software industry is time-consuming and sometimes nerve-racking.  I am still migrating my app, JV Life Tracker, to a new Google Android platform.  I am making progress.  However, Google ripped the rug from under our feet with some of their changes.
 

The Only Thing We Know For Sure is That the Future Will Be Different Than Now

 
One predictable thing about the future is that it will be different than today.  Hopefully, we will no longer wear COVID-19 face masks.  However, social distancing may go on for years.  I believe that some of the changes brought on by COVID-19 will continue and morph into a new reality we could not have predicted months ago.
 

Trends That Will Continue Into the Future

 
Remote doctor’s visits may continue.  They are probably not as effective as physical visits.  However, they are much more convenient.  In May, for the first time, I participated in a group therapy session for mental health–online.
 
More people will work from home.  Take-out and delivery food will continue to be hot.  Businesses that have not yet turned to the Internet will be forced to do so.  Internet service provider companies will probably be hotter and hotter as long as they can deliver valuable services at least as reliably as Comcast’s.
 
I have not yet ridden a driverless car.  Nor have I invested in cryptocurrency.  Those things may yet be in my future.  I do my taxes with Turbotax, though.  I took advantage of their human accountant advisor and was glad I did because she saved us thousands of dollars.  She did an online consultation with me that was perhaps more helpful than any physical visit would have been.
 

Education in the Future

 
Whatever we do, we do things differently than we did in the 1980s.  I can check out electronic books at the library, not to mention the hundreds of items in my Kindle library.  I still like to hold a physical book sometimes, but I do not have to do that for every title.
 
Online learning will probably become even more prevalent in the future.  Though some people say they cannot learn that way, we may have little choice.  In 2013, I got a health coaching certificate from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, without stepping foot in New York.  Whether that was better than a brick and mortar experience, I do not know.  It was less expensive.  That gave me my own kitchen in which to test recipes.
 

Travel in the Future

 
Starting in 2018, I have used Lyft off and on.  I can visit my husband in the hospital without the stress of driving on the freeway.  If the jeep does not start, Lyft is a backup.  The driver is nearly always good for a stimulating conversation, which can break my isolation sometimes.  One time, Lyft served as a low-cost ambulance.  Lyft was indispensable getting me to and from the airport for my father’s funeral in late 2018.
 

Obsolete Skills Are Not Entirely Obsolete

 
Personally, I do not want to go back to the old ways.  Although many of my computer skills are obsolete, I still have advantages with a computer software engineering background.  Nutrition is my passion now, but I would not be where I am in nutrition without a knowledge of computers.
 

Meeting Mr. Right or Miss Right

 
I am glad I found my husband, off-line.  Over the many years that I was single, I dated online from time to time.  I met many men and now know that many more reasons I am fortunate to have found the husband I have.  Many romance scammers are online.  They have similarities in their profiles.  Fortunately, I never met any of them in person.  I doubt that the actual person behind each scam is anything like who is portrayed in the online profile.  The best way to develop a romantic relationship is still in-person.  However, it may take a computer to make the initial connection.  Thankfully, I met my husband at a gathering.
 

Social Interaction

 
Gatherings.  Most of us want them again.  COVID-19 has taught us how vital physical, social interaction is.  The computer is useful for helping us plan, advertise, and inform people where and when gatherings are.  Even though I do not care for crowds, I look forward to being with people again.
 

Some People Prefer the Old Ways; We Can Be an Indispensable Help to Them

 
There are endless remarks I could make about the future.   Computers have brought about change.  Not all of it is welcomed by everyone.  My husband, born almost two decades before me, has a Ph.D. in economics and likes things the old way.  He leaves the computer work up to me, including all of the telephone work.  That makes me indispensable to him, but it also puts a lot of responsibility on me.  Here he is, a CPA, and I am doing our taxes.  I get benefits, though, so I will not complain.  He does manage to use a TV remote, however.  I have not told him that it is a computer too!
 

Look at My Other Blog Entries

 
If you are interested in nutrition, mental health, or how to become happier, feel free to click on the arrows to the sides and sample my other blog entries.
 

A Future of Fasting

 
Now I want to start a fast for my immediate future, even though it is not 4:00 PM yet.  What can I call it?  I know: Future Fast.  I planned it for sixteen hours. Intermittent fasting will be a part of my future lifestyle.  If all goes well, it will give me a long future.
 

Prayer

 
 
AFTERNOON PRAYER
 
Dear Lord,
 
Ask, and It Shall Be Given
Will you do the favor of helping me convince my medical provider that I should go back up on my thyroid hormone?  Fortunately, the nurse practitioner who lowered it is no longer with the clinic I go to.  I have an M.D. provider now.
 
Motivation
Lord, I am so grateful I have been feeling more motivated lately.  It is partly due to medication and partly due to things I have learned about motivation.  Pills should never be a substitute for education.  However, they can help when no amount of training seems to be enough.
 
Eternal Life
Lord, I have been discussing the future with my readers.  I have not introduced any new concepts.  However, my ideas may be welcome, anyway.  What can you tell me about my future?  You have promised eternal life if I will believe in you.  Believe in you, I do.  Eternal life would give me the longest future imaginable.  You conquered death.  We all know that death is in our future, though we do not like to talk about it much.
 
Fear of Disability (and Its Resolution)
Knowing death is conquered, what in my future do I have to fear?  I could lose some of my abilities, but I have more capacity than I have time to use already.  Help me to be fearless about that.  I wrote a novel, Lisa’s Light and Hope in my twenties to grapple with my fear of disability.  If my readers are interested in it, here it is for download.
 
The Picture of the Future
I want a beautiful, bright, unobstructed picture of where I am going as I march forward.  Am I chained to life on a roller coaster?  Or will better vistas spread open before me?  I do not know.  However, I have been home from The Santa Fe House for five weeks, and my JV Life Tracker scores have stayed high.  They have not maxed every day, but they are in a much higher range than before.
 
 
Getting Settled
Thank you, Lord, for settling my soul.  I was striving for the unobtainable, which probably is not what I want anyway.  Now, I feel peace in what I have and where I am going step-by-step.  Thank you for the gift of my husband.  I had decided to never marry again.  However, I am glad that I did.  Someone blew away my limiting belief about it.  Of course, I can do it.  It is not necessary to marry a perfect person or be perfect oneself to have a happy marriage.
 
I want to always be yours, Lord, as you have promised me for decades.  I will live for you.  I may even die for you.
 
Amen.
 
If you would like to join me on this journey from the beginning, please start with Day One.  If you wish to download a FREE copy of my ebook (with no need to enter your name or email), click on the book below.
 
 
 

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