Maybe it’s a sign of insanity, but the apartment doesn’t feel as small as it did. The problem now is just the sameness of it, and knowing what we’re waiting for.
The problem with an anxious mind is that it can sound so reasonable. Crazy stuff begins to sound so sane, because there’s nothing to compare it to. And that’s my real problem right now…I’m used to talking to so many people, seeing so many faces and stepping into so many lives, and it balances out the crazy. Zoom just isn’t cutting it. Don’t get me wrong, Zoom is brilliant and makes everything easier, especially for teachers. But a face on my screen isn’t a real face…it’s just another door in the Netflix hallway.
Are these metaphors terrible? Yep, they are. My writing hasn’t improved. I thought I’d write more during this quarantine, like some kinda imprisoned genius, scribbling late into the night. But no, online school is a 24/7 thing. And I’ve been cooking a lot—I learned to make ice cream, and we’ve been experiencing that nearly every day. I’ve been listening to a couple history podcasts every day, learning a lot in thirty-minute segments. And yeah, a lot of Netflix.
And Sunday is Andrew’s birthday. He’s adjusted to the idea of a 3-person party, but I may figure something out. I wonder how he’ll remember this time. As a weird vacation where mom and dad were always there but only half-paying attention, or as a big unstructured break from school and church and routine? As an endless episode of Peppa Pig, a lot of ice cream, a million walks around the neighborhood, pajamas and pajamas and pajamas all day? I don’t know. I hope he doesn’t remember how stressed Daddy and I were, how we griped at each other about little things…or how he cried when he couldn’t go to his grandmother’s house…or how he had a lame birthday. But maybe it’s ok to remember those things. I mean, this crisis will be part of his life story, however it turns out.
We’re all being dragged through it—a cloud of disruption that will be shaded in on calendars and represented with photos on timelines, that will get a chapter in history books…they might make an American Girl doll that experiences COVID19, and she’ll do it with bravery and charm. Her doll will come with a couple of masks.
But that’s on the other side, and we’re still in the middle. Nobody knows how this ends, or how it begins to end. And I’m having trouble being funny about it. At least, I no longer laugh at my own jokes. But hey, Drew thinks I’m funny. Maybe his birthday will be ok after all. He doesn’t ask for much…just popsicles and blocks and ‘little stories’. So we’ll look forward to the next small thing, do the next assignment, listen to the next piece of news.
Stay safe, team 😷