Plagued by Restlessness

I find myself restless more often than not lately, and the return of dark and dreary days — cold, dark and dreary days — isn’t helping.

It’s time for me to drive again, and I considered doing so, except when I stepped outside, the cold drove me back inside. One of these days, I might have a garage, in which case driving will be a matter of pushing a button or two to get into the car, but for now, the vehicle is still out in the open and blanketed with a car cover. It’s been almost five years since the car was restored, so perhaps it doesn’t need to be babied as much. Or maybe it needs to be babied more. But whichever, it’s still more trouble than it’s worth to unpack the car and drive somewhere.

There’s no place to go, anyway, except to the grocery store, and if I went there, I’d want something more than healthy food. It seems as if this time is one that calls for treats to offset all the restrictions. Although I would really like to have had something to make me and the day feel less dreary, I opted for health.

I made salads for the next few days.

I also made a stir fry and cut up vegetables for dipping. It didn’t help with the restlessness, of course, but I could feel good about what I was eating. Besides, I no longer know what a treat would be. I could get flour and sugar to make cookies or something like that, but then, with being isolated by myself, there would only be me to eat them.

Still, the stir fry was good, and there’s enough left for another meal tomorrow, though tomorrow, who knows — I might give in and go for something a lot less healthy.

Unless, of course, the sun is shining — then I might try to do something out in the yard. That’s different, since it’s not something I can do in the winter. But then, I’d be frustrated at all the building supplies taking up space in my yard instead of being put to use.

Eek. What a life!

Actually, despite everything, I still have it good and count myself lucky that restlessness is the worst of my problems. I wouldn’t even mind being so restless since it’s something that I’m used to, but this restlessness seems to be fueled by the dread of what is going to happen because of these draconian measures and how this whole plague-ridden mess is going to be used against us in the future.

But that’s the future. Today, I’m okay. Today, I’m lucky. Today, I’m grateful.


Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator.

Anything Goes

I’m feeling restless today, as if waiting for something to happen, though I’m not sure what. Life, perhaps. Or maybe death. My father is teetering on the brink, but he is still too connected to life to want to let go and too tired of it all to want to stay. At ninety-seven, and after two months of being mostly bedridden, he’s entitled. Still, his unrest leaves its imprint on the house.

I was fine at my dance classes today, going through our Hawaiian routines, playing our Tahitian numbers (I say playing because Tahitian more than any of the others, makes me feel light and free), and practicing paradiddles and on Broadway (or Shirley Temple or Spaghetti, depending on what era you learned to tap) and putting them together with flap-ball-changes for a little tap dance. I was even fine at lunch afterward. But when I walked into this house, I was beset by restlessness. (Which is why I am late with today’s post.) Couldn’t sit still, couldn’t think, couldn’t do much of anything.)

My sister and I spent the late afternoon baking one of our family’s childhood favorites, a sort of convocation or invocation of the spirits, seeing if perhaps our deceased mother would come help with our father. He seems more settled tonight, so perhaps she came. And we had our first meal together in — hmmm. I can’t remember the last time. Since we’ve been taking turns looking after our father, we are seldom both here at the same time except at night.

We’ve had our times of not getting along — we are just too different — but tonight we were in perfect accord, she working the dough and me fixing the filling.

This isn’t exactly a recipe-type blog, but what the heck — it’s become something of a diary, so anything goes, right?

Hamburger Rolls

Combine 2 Tablespoons sugar, 1½ teasHamburger Rollspoon salt, 3 tablespoons shortening. Add ½ cup boiling water; stir well until dissolved. Add ½ cup milk then add 1 cake yeast crumbled. Blend in 3 cups sifted flour. Let rise once until double, roll out ¼” thick, and cut in squares approximately 3”x3”. Place a couple of tablespoonfuls of hamburger/cabbage filling to in the middle of the square, fold corners of dough to the center and pinch closed. Put rolls in greased and let rise a about 30 minutes. Cook 15 to 20 minutes at 400°.


Brown 1½ lbs ground beef, skim off grease. Slice cabbage (that had been boiled until tender) and some onion, add to ground beef. Season with parsley flakes, salt, pepper. Cook with cover on for 10 minutes.


Pat Bertram is the author of the suspense novels Light Bringer, More Deaths Than One, A Spark of Heavenly Fire, and Daughter Am I. Bertram is also the author of Grief: The Great Yearning, “an exquisite book, wrenching to read, and at the same time full of profound truths.” Connect with Pat on Google+. Like Pat on Facebook.