The first big tip off to the severity of the situation was my daughter calling to tell me her classes, graduation and Model UN were all canceled. She said goodbye to her friends threw some clothes in a bag and caught a ride home on Friday morning. It’s just the two of us for now as we await the return of my second daughter on Thursday.
Last night, we sat in the kitchen at my neighbors house. High school graduation is canceled, prom and ball are canceled. I’m looking into the faces of my daughter and friends and we are all perplexed. What does it mean to miss these milestones? My daughter would be earning her first degree in May, but now it will be mailed to her. This I tell her is a small price to pay to keep everyone safe.
We sit together in the bright kitchen on both sides of a large island. We are separated by a cool 5 feet. The dark night and a cloud of uncertainty surrounds us. There’s a certain quietness to our neighborhood now. The rain taps the windows and I notice the sound of a lone car traveling by with the tires making a familiar hiss as rubber hits the wet asphalt.
The girls went all the way through grade school together and now they recount their favorite childhood memories. From ice skating birthday parties and lemonade stands, to family dinners together and college admissions. It gave me a feeling of connection and love to be there and share this history. After we left I told my daughter you only have a few nights like this in your lifetime. Our normal life would not have allowed for this. None of us would have been together and this would never have happened, or not exactly like this and certainly not with the same intensity. It was as if all the emotions in the room had been distilled.
At the same time, I’m getting something I’ve been seeking for so long and am never able to find. Time. If there is a silver lining here this is it. As an optimist, I’m looking at how this time can be well spent. I can work on my business, and make the time consuming changes that I need to make to my website that I’ve put off, I can work on my Treasure Island novel. I can organize my garage which is full of unnecessary things that I no longer need or use. I can read the ten books stacked near my bed. I can file everything sitting in piles in my office. I can do my taxes. I can work in my beautiful garden. I can paint, and so on.
As our healthcare system works to help those who have contracted the virus, I can do my part and stay home. I will spend time with the two people I love the most, work on my business, get organized, and do the things I enjoy, but never have time for. This is the silver lining to this chapter in history.
Stay safe, stay well and stay warm.
Love and blessings to all.