• Laura

Social Distancing: Week 7

It's hard to believe it's May, because it feels like it was just March. All of April disappeared into the quarantine black hole, and all the usual ways we mark time have disappeared. I'm working on accepting that this may go on much longer than I could have imagined at the beginning. Our school district has acknowledged that school will most likely look really different in the fall, and I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around that.

A couple of months was one thing. The predictions of two years floating around now? It's much harder to wrap my head around that. Finishing out the school year virtually was doable, but the idea of starting out next year virtually is something else entirely. But then there is the alternative--what if schools start back and it doesn't seem safe yet? Do I jump into actual homeschooling and lose our seat at the elementary school we LOVE? Do I send one of my children when I have two others that are considered more at risk? It's just so hard to wrap my head around anything relating to the future right now because there is so much unknown.

I started to feel a little more restless this week. On Saturday, we decided to get out of the house and do something a little different and fun this weekend (this was the second time in seven weeks that we have been in a car, so even that in itself was a bit of an adventure). There was a flyover scheduled over local hospitals, so we thought we'd park nearby and watch. We weren't the only ones with the idea, others parked throughout the parking lot and stood near their cars waiting... and waiting... and waiting. Until someone got word that the planes were already landing, and we missed the hospital we were at, and so it was rather anti-climatic. The kids did enjoy a change of scenery and for them, I think getting to stand up and look out of the sunroof was excitement enough. Afterwards, we drove through the airport, hoping to show the kids at least a few planes, and we did find some parked ones to point out, which was exciting to kids who have been stuck at home for seven weeks. The airport was a ghost town. On what normally would be a busy Saturday afternoon we saw only one employee walking and passed two or three other cars driving through. It was strange, seeing a place that is normally bustling and busy so empty.

On the first Saturday in May, it was also strange to not watch the Kentucky Derby. This is the one sporting event I love to watch, and attending the Derby is on my bucket list. But this year, the Derby will not happen in May--instead, it is rescheduled for September. I alternate between optimism--it will be so nice to have something like this to look forward to once things start to return to normal, and skepticism--will we really be at a place where things like the Derby can happen again by September? As summer marches closer, I am holding on to a small ray of hope, that just maybe, we'll be able to spend at least some of it at the pool, while preparing myself that we may be in for a long summer at home. I am hoping the kids return to school in the fall while also knowing that there is a very real possibility they will not.

I'm trying to hold the balance of hope of a quicker return to normalcy with preparing to settle in for the long haul. Some days I lean more one way than the other. I'm hoping to spend summer as we usually do, by the pool, while also adjusting my expectations that it may not be possible. I'm trying to not get excited for anything coming up because I know it may be cancelled, while also maintaining a positive attitude and optimistic outlook.

This time is so many things. It's exhausting, having everyone at home for weeks on end with nothing to break up the monotony. It's so nice, not having to set an alarm clock or scramble to get lunches packed in the mornings. It's strange, only interacting with people outside of our house through a screen. It's teaching me to truly take one day at a time, because there is no way to plan for the future right now. It's reminding me how little is really in our control. It's helping me see what I actually need. It's stretching my faith, my patience, my endurance, my creativity.

Other social distancing reflections: week 1 // week 2 // week 3 // week 4 // week 5 // week 6 // scenes from quarantine

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