Never in a million years did I anticipate this would happen to me, but apparently it is quite common.  Even so, it’s unsettling. 

One evening, during my recent vacation, I received a review of “Be Careful What You Wish For” from a reviewer that knocked me off my chair.  So excited was I by her words that I lost all sense of what I was doing for the moments that I read, then re-read, her remarks.  I was dressing for dinner at the time, which included cleaning my ears following a hot shower. 

And that’s when the shocking event took place.  As I swiveled the cotton swab around in my ear canal, the cotton-part inserted fell off inside…not kidding.  Immediate concern arose followed by increasing panic as my attempts to remove the cotton from my ear only drove it further inside. 

“Oh no.  Oh no,” I began to utter, fretting over what I could do to remove the element that was, undoubtedly, muting my hearing by now.  I know because I called my son for help.  His response indicated that my clarity of hearing had been tainted.  As my son attempted to Google a solution, I decided to take a step back, partake in a calming breath, and regain my composure.  Then, and only then, was I able to think about the situation logically and figure out what to do.

What I, ultimately, came up with was the same solution that Google would offer my son.  A bit of water, a tilted head, a tug at the top of my ear, and a set of tweezers became the means of which I dislodged the cotton from my ear canal.  It was amazing just how clear I could hear once I solved my issue.  My appreciation for this sense grew multi-fold, admittedly.  

What I also realized, though, was the detrimental impact being distracted by larger voices can have over our health and welfare as well as our invaluable, irreplaceable, intimate lives.   And the importance of remembering that “there is a time and place for everything.”   

Right now, we are being bombarded by larger voices.  They are bouncing off each other, overtaking our surroundings, making love to the fragile voices in our heads and ultimately distracting us from our own lives.  Everyone and everything important to us on a micro scale has now been muted by each of us as we endeavor to clearly understand what we need to know on a macro one.  The end result?  We feel panicked and out of control on both.    

Might I recommend the same solution for this as I used when dislodging the cotton part of the cotton swab from my ear canal.  Take a step back, partake in a calming breath, and regain your composure.  No doubt, the information the larger voices are relaying is vitally important, but so is your sanity and immediate life.  Don’t jeopardize (or worse yet, trade) one for the other in an effort to do it all at one time.  I know we are all being challenged in this regard currently.  But as I said before, “there is a time and place for everything.”    

In other words, try hard to “remain focused on the internal while remaining woke by the external” as not doing so will only invite unnecessary problems…and many not as easily fixed as that of a faulty cotton swab, I assure you.  

Remember, “parents aren’t needed less” and “children don’t stop growing up,” during a crisis.