Life Still in Lockdown

My thoughts flitted all over this week, always recognizing the need to keep them corralled and forbid awfulizing. And I’m in a privileged world with work and loving families in secure situations – for now. Maybe that’s it. We have no idea what’s coming – some recovery? Or the “darkest winter in modern history?”

To think I began the year imagining us walking along the remains of Hadrian’s Wall this summer – knowing Lady B would love that. She’s very interested in history these days, her prized possession a fat history of the world from prehistoric times to “the year my mom graduated from college.” My only concern then was how old Sweet Brother would be for traveling. “We were so naïve,” a friend said yesterday.

The other day I walked down to the ferry dock just to remember leaving the island and was shocked to see the totally empty parking lots. I can read about things, but seeing the vacant tarmac startled me.

I walked home thinking about the administration’s frighteningly successful attempts to dismantle our democracy, and their chaotic and pathetic response to the virus. What if this pestilence that’s touched the entire world had been some universal good circling the globe, sudden outbreak of fair treatment and kindness – a virus causing reasonableness.

At my age will I ever see the grandchildren again in real life? What will happen in the election? That’s what my mind does – goes a little way down the path of despair, and then remembers how lucky we are when getting through the day and the month, is a challenge for so many. Countless lost lives and livelihoods.

And then my mind veers off, into dailiness or into the legitimate enjoying of what is still before me. I can’t hug the grandkids (although I really loved the tale of a grandpa donning full motorcycle leathers, helmet, mask, gloves so he could hug his grandchildren or the family who erected a plastic barrier with plastic sleeve tubes so a grandmother could hug her little people), but I can talk to ours, engage with them on a screen.

We could be there virtually at reading time when Lady B discovered the dictionary definition revealed when you press a word on a Kindle – and learned the magic of looking up Stonehenge and seeing what the index of her history book can do.

We admired Lord B’s costume of the day (Artemis, goddess of the hunt, with tropical shirt and shorts) and viewed a favorite book of his about trucks and excavators, followed by his rendition of “Henry the Explorer.”

We’ve seen puppet shows and live performances (every detail planned by Sweet B), including “Sunset Performance” – staged in the garden and set to classical music as she twirled and posed in ballet moves, including lifts by her tuxedo-clad dad.

And Sweet Brother – he’s the one who has changed so very much in the lockdown – transformed in these months from newborn to chubby, cheerful guy, cuddling against his dad in matching gray sweats and blue t-shirt.

It’s greedy to want more. Being thankful for what is seems a better idea.

 

 

 

4 thoughts on “Life Still in Lockdown

  1. And it’s so normal to want more. And so hard to not be able to plan the coming months the way we used to. But, oh, what an absolutely wonderful painting of the hunter in his tropical shirt. Our families healthy and safe – that’s a good thing to be thankful for. And your virtual interactions sound great to me. This is a memorable time for everyone, in good and bad ways. Our teenage grandson yesterday was very philosophical yesterday talking about the good parts and the bad parts of the lockdown – that soon they could “increase their bubble” and be able to play with their two best friends who live across the street.

  2. Katy, I so love these weekly essays. This one made my heart ache for many reasons. Your grandchildren and your connection with them is heartwarming. I think we are all struggling with the daily swings between gratitude laced with hopefulness and the worry and fear that things will get worse, or maybe just not any better. This situation has reinforced the wisdom of taking things one day at a time. I am glad you and your family are well.

    • Oh Sara thank you for this comment, so much. You are right, of course, about day at a time. I just had a little flashback to that afternoon when Georgia brought you to my workroom – so many years ago and so much fun. And I am so glad your family is also well, and send the very best to you, Katy

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