I woke up this morning with the urge to know the numbers, something that I have not look at in any detail since this began. They were easier than I expected to find with a state by state app built right into the feed, and staggering in their stark grimness: two thousand new cases yesterday in my county alone; six hundred deaths in my state. And once I had this snapshot there was no easy way to process the multitude of thoughts and emotions that those digits imply. I'm trying my best to not default to numbness against what is true. That to me feels like one of the real potential travesties, and yet I also understand we are all in this strange and surreal - yet very real - survival mode and we are doing the best we can to get through. Poor Hazel is even a bit out of sorts as well.
Athen, my ten year old, said yesterday with a gush of sincerity that all he wants is to go back to school. He really misses his friends. When we all went into lockdown, he was just turning the corner on a very hard mid-year transition to a brand new school after we had moved and was just starting to feel like he was hitting his groove. His words. And I feel for him. For him it's been hard since December, most days then pleading to please stay home. Such a strange turn of events. And such a good reminder that all things are temporary no matter how interminable they feel. He is also living proof that relationships can blossom in this crazy time, as he and a certain 5th grade human have taken up to being very close "friends". Can we say a little hallelujah for the 6 foot rule?!
Owen, was built for the apocalypse. He loves hiding out in his third floor teen loft, and he also loves to just spend time with his family. His tech savvy has saved us more than once, and he even set up these fun online games that our families can play together over Zoom. We take a lot of walks and talk about life, and I marvel at his sincere curiosity over the natural world and his beyond-his-years sturdy sense of himself. Even though he's like a vampire, sleeping all day and awake all night, a struggle I am trying my best to let go of when even his pediatrician signed off on (as long as he's getting enough sleep in one go), which Owen was more than triumphant about and refers to often to make his case. It does feel like the quality of the times we do have together are richer, less harried, with a bit more more presence as everything has been distilled down to a much simpler flow. There is space and opportunity that there wasn't there before, and I can feel myself holding on to it carefully and with wonder before the moments slip away.
Yes there is worry, but I can say that for certain that I feel closer to my husband and kids in all of this. While we have our daily grinds over who gets to be on the wifi and who ate the last ice cream sandwich, we've also had a lot of time to really talk and Be together. This for sure, is a shiny gift in all of the rubble. Even my 97 year old Grandma seems to be doing well - this photo posted by the assisted living home she lives in Ohio. Isn't she adorable? I'm looking forward to the day I can finally get back there to visit her.
It's Saturday. Its day 29. I love my family and am grateful for these relationships and all that they entail. The sun is shining and there are eggs to dye, baskets to fill, and brunch-y things to prepare for a little celebrating tomorrow. I may even make matzo ball soup as well. It feels like enough for today.