Also, I realize we're into one year and two weeks of the pandemic but whatever :)
1. What was life like in early 2020?
Well in January 2020 we went on a seven day cruise with my parents. It was amazing and we had so much fun! When we got home, the kids had shorter weeks of school due to rotating teacher's strikes. At the end of February, we had just gotten back to going to school five days a week after over a month of three and four day school weeks. Sam was looking forward to attending an international camp in the summer and Rachel was two weeks away from her first ever dance exams. Sam and I worship led at church on March 8 -- the last time a "regular" service was held at our church.
2. What was the biggest change?
I couldn't work because the schools were closed, Dave was working from home, and the kids didn't have any school for three weeks. And we couldn't really do anything outside the house -- no playdates, no fun daytime excursions, and no activities. Everything just... stopped.
3. What were your coping mechanisms?
I drank a lot of Coke, I cried a lot, and I tried to find fun things to do with the kids. It also helped knowing that almost everyone, the entire world over, was experiencing very similar things -- everyone was just staying home.
4. What did connection in your relationships look like?
A lot of Zoom calls. Our church small group met about every two weeks on Zoom and that was so good. Other than that, it really felt like all the connections were shut down. It was soooo exciting whenever we briefly got to see someone in person -- mostly if we were exchanging goods of some kind.
5. What will you remember most?
How well my kids did with this huge disruption to their lives. I will also remember how sad and lonely I was. I missed people. (I still miss people.)
6. What was the biggest challenge?
I think the biggest challenge for me was that I couldn't read. I would have thought having endless time to read would have been an incredible gift but I couldn't read. I read a lot of fluff and didn't get into meatier books for quite a few months. Really, it's just since the beginning of February that I feel I've finally gotten my reading stride back again.
The other HUGE challenge was that my work (as a substitute secretary/librarian) just stopped. With the schools closed, I had no job. That was really hard.
7. What was a beautiful memory?
I still remember how fun making our stained glass elephant was. Also, our two week trip to visit my parents in Saskatchewan was sooooo good. I never would have assumed that just going to Saskatchewan would be so amazing but it really was.
8. What do you believe now that you didn't a year ago?
I don't know. I guess I believe that "in person connection" is more important than I would have guessed. Dave has said that, even as an introvert, he misses casual conversations with people. I also believe that our house is never scrupulously clean because we just don't put energy into it rather than we don't have time :) Hahaha!!!
Oh, and that we all need to wash our hands a lot more!
9. What would you do differently?
I would exercise more and not "let things go." I wish I had set up more of a healthy routine for both eating and exercising rather than thinking "I can be unhealthy for 'just three weeks' and then get back into good habits." It's been a struggle to break some of those early coping mechanisms.
10. What will you carry forward?
Blog Friends Book Club/Happy Hour!!!
Also, hopefully I will carry forward the excitement of getting to see people and go about our "normal" lives without feeling overwhelmed by things. I try not to take every single day that the kids can attend "in person" school for granted. I try to relish driving Rachel to dance (I don't always succeed at this one) and I try to be grateful every day that I get to leave the house and work.
So those are a few more thoughts on having lived with Covid for one year (and two weeks). If you haven't answered these questions yet, I encourage you to reflect on them. This was a good exercise for me.