Thankful for a pandemic

I’m not quite sure how to process this.Today was one of the happiest days in memory.

I realize that the world is in a horrible state. We’re sheltering in place, worried about a disease that is spreading at unprecedented rates. I haven’t had in-person connection for almost two months. There are so many uncertainties.

And yet, I am so happy.

I woke up without setting an alarm, something that is a rare luxury. I meditated, knowing that I wasn’t racing against time, that I could stay in that state for as long, or for as little, as I wanted. I talked to Mom, the same incomprehensible conversation about a man planting a tree for her, six times today. I am so thankful that I’ve learned not to care about the truth, and learned instead to care about connection and laughter. I cooked a new fish curry recipe that turned out surprisingly delicious. I made a beautiful salad with nasturtiums. I joined my San Francisco Glide Zoom service, and clapped and danced and hallelujahed. I sat on the porch, sipping iced tea doing the NY Times crossword for an hour and a half. I completed it successfully; the first time this year! I laughed when I was shown a congratulations message for a 1 day streak. That’s not a streak; that’s a first. I discovered words in the NYT Spelling Bee app and reached the genius level. I closed my eyes and felt the warm winds meet my face as I swung in the swing that prompted me to buy this house. In July 2017, I climbed the 20 steps from the street to the porch, saw the porch swing, swang in it, and declared, “This is my house.” I sat swinging today, thinking that may have been the best decision I’ve made in my life. I came inside and precisely cut material for masks. I had forgotten how much I loved sewing. I love measuring the patten, cutting to the precise 1/8”. I love feeding the material through the machine, stitches even, cutting threads to the quick. I love assembling cloths I bargained for in Zambia markets, in Indonesian markets, in Indian markets. Thinking I would make dresses, and fabric sitting 20 years in a trunk. Pulling them out, knowing this was the best use of fabrics bought eons ago. Listening to jazz and Motown on Pandora. Singing along, imagining my life as a back-up singer, wearing a short fringed dress and shaking a tambourine. And then joining a book club by Zoom, recently reunited, of friends from the year 2000, when we were bright-eyed and new to San Francisco. Unlike in-person books clubs, where the book is rarely mentioned, we discussed the plot, character development, author choices. Another Zoom call, discussing a class we’ve taken online. Another FaceTime call with a long-time friend.

So thankful for connections. So thankful for time. So thankful for choices that have brought me here. And, strangely enough, thankful for this pandemic that has invited me to examine what is important. And what is not.

11 thoughts on “Thankful for a pandemic

  1. What a wonderful post. Love your masks! We bought some cheerful masks from a neighbor.
    This episode is truly resetting some things about our lives.

  2. Loved reading this. Made me smile from ear to ear. Picturing you doing all those things and most importantly, you being happy given the circumstances and given the year you’ve had. Beautiful blog ❤🥰🙏

  3. > I’ve learned not to care about the truth, and learned instead to care about connection and laughter

    ❤️

    So important to keep in mind not for individuals, but for parents with kids at home, too. It’s OK to not complete all the homeschooling assignments. Just make sure they feel happy and connected — the rest will follow.

  4. Lori, I felt the same way about that porch when I first laid eyes on the house in 1992. I knew I would buy it before I got to the top step. I love that you love it and it makes you so happy. Wonderful!

  5. ” I talked to Mom, the same incomprehensible conversation about a man planting a tree for her, six times today. I am so thankful that I’ve learned not to care about the truth, and learned instead to care about connection and laughter.”- This piece really caught in my mind. It reminded me of the novel “Goodbye, Vitamin” which explores a daughter’s relationship with her dad as he is going through dementia. I read it a long time ago, but it still sits with me so it must have been good.
    Anyways, thank you for sharing this with us and being honest about your appreciation during this time. I, too, am experiencing a lot of gratitude during this movie like episode.

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