The bands of Tropical Storm Delta have given us a very rainy fall weekend, canceling any plans for our usual long dog walks, yard work, or bike rides exploring the city. That’s okay, though; it has been a stressful week and I’m grateful that Mother Nature has insisted that we move at a slower pace for a few days.
Even with all of the precautions we are taking at school, I found that one of my students had been exposed to another student with COVID-19. This student came to a lesson with me not knowing test results yet, and so I was possibly exposed, too. I began to have symptoms and was immediately sent for testing. Thankfully, my symptoms were brought on by the impending weather change and the test came back negative. I felt such relief- I’d worn a mask in the house and slept in the guest room to try to protect Dan. I already brought the virus home to him once before and would hate to be the cause of his becoming ill ever again.
As Covid continues to run rampant across our country, it is easy to fall into despair about things ever returning to normal. We have all grown weary of the separation from loved ones, the restrictions, the gloom and doom news, and, dear lord, the awful political mess. It’s important not to give in to the darkness of it all, though. We have to do our best to keep our eye on the goal of getting past this awful time and returning to some form of normalcy again someday.
But…we also need to continue to live and find joy in the now, as this is what we’ve been dealt. Every generation has its own challenge to grapple with, and ours is a global pandemic and serious divisions in our country. I don’t want to live in constant turmoil; I can’t avoid the feelings of worry and fear, but I can try to see the good, too and seek some sort of balance. This weekend I focused on gratitude for my Dan, as his birthday was yesterday. We decided to celebrate with a special dinner at home on Saturday, as Mondays are yoga nights for Dan and a school night for me.
We had to work a lot over the weekend as we most always do, cleaning the guesthouse for an incoming AirBnB guest, trying to pick up the endless wet leaves from the days of rain, cleaning the house, and I had some work commitments. However, we found pockets of time to just enjoy each other’s company. Sometimes simple is so much better than some grand celebration, and this weekend certainly was. Going out into the world is a harsh reminder of all that has changed; the masks, the distancing, the sad signs of division. Home is a place of peace, a touchstone; not to forget the problems of the world that must be faced if we’re ever to change them, but to recharge to gain the strength we need to face them.
I don’t have the answers of how we will fix the mess we are in right now, but maybe the start is encapsulated in the quote by Buddha, Do good, be good. Try our best to be kind, to help others, to seek beauty in small places, to celebrate the life we have no matter what. It won’t cause some tidal wave of change, but maybe it will cause a ripple that will continue to spread out into the world. All I know is that it gives me a lifeline to hold onto when everything feels so out of control. Be the change. It’s a start.