Almost — Can Feel Like a Gut Punch
Photo owned by me.
I looked back in my journal this morning and was struck at how fast everything is moving. We are now on the threshold of a new normal, limited on freedom, holed in for the long run — gazing into a murky future. Like most of you, I’ve been trying to manage my concern about family and friends, trying to get sleep and exercise to keep mind and body healthy amidst the prevailing anxiety.
But ten days ago I came close to feeling joyful
Nobody is arguing that what is coming will be easy or anything remotely approaching normal for a very long time. Now might seem like an atypical time to talk about being cheery with all the terrible things happening in the world as a result of the coronavirus.
At first, we took the severity of the pandemic lightly
Even as the seriousness of what we are in the midst started seeping in, my husband continued to go out shopping. Alarmed, our son fought us with all the arsenal he had at his disposal to stay put. For a day or two, my husband ignored him. But our son’s zeal remained unrelenting, his voice rising with frustration. Then, something inside of me burst open like a door to paradise.
I had an idea!
Our son has been smoking for nearly thirty years. Our constant pleas fell on blocked ears. His terse responses kept us at bay. Realizing that he’s an adult and there is nothing we can do, we stopped saying anything. I became a bystander who was never far enough from doomed thoughts to remain undamaged. But the anguish I felt twisted and turned in me like a sorcerer’s knife.
How does this relate to the Coronavirus?
During one of the calls from our son at six in the morning imploring us to stay in. The occasion was a golden opportunity to approach his smoking and compare our many years of worry to his current concern for us. I bargained with him that if he stops smoking…