After breakfast, Zoe and I drove out to Venice, where we walked on the beach for a good hour or so. It was definitely one of the highlights of the week. Malibu Pier, Venice Beach, Runyan Canyon - all of these places are spectacular and I really enjoyed our walks.
But I have to admit that the theme of the week for me, sadly, has been a term I learned in 12 Step meetings "Compare and Despair." I am ashamed to admit it, but it keeps coming up. At a lovely dinner party, in the backyard of my friend's wonderful home in Laurel Canyon, a friend of mine who is thinking of retiring from his extremely successful practice as analyst to the Hollywood moguls said to me, "You know, I just have to say to myself that I have enough. More than enough."
I'm happy for him.
And even comparing my mother's accommodations in a nursing home in Brooklyn to the lives of my friends' mothers here - makes me feel sad that I wasn't able to do better by my mom.
And on and on it goes...
I know very well that I have so much to be grateful for. So I am embarrassed to write these words. But maybe by putting them down, I will somehow exorcise them from my brain.
Be gone! I think they are. For now. I know it's human to have these thoughts. I think that when you're living your life and busy and working, you can keep these thoughts at bay...most of the time.
Tomorrow morning we hit the road - north to Berkeley and then up to our cabin in the woods in Laytonville, California. It will be a very different trip. There will be nothing to compare and despair about really. Just a lot of trees. And who doesn't love trees?