A Year to Reflect

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A Year to Reflect

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Today, marks the one-year anniversary since the WHO declared the COVID19 pandemic a pandemic. It is also one year since we as a family began quarantining/hunkering down, social distancing and pausing on activities where being around crowds of people became dangerous. I made a note of this in my calendar. As I reflect on this year, I am first grateful that my dear loved ones are still here and safe. I am also sad for the two family members we have lost. One to covid and another to circumstances related in part to covid. I also grieve for the loss of social interactions and in-person school for my kids. Being online has been a challenge and my kids are doing really well despite the difficulties, but as a mom I am saddened for all of the fun school and friend experiences they have missed this year. I am hopeful change will come soon and they will get back to a more familiar old normal soon enough. When I look back on my calendar from the beginning of March 2020 and the end of February, I see a full calendar of school events, friends, and new beginnings. We had playdates, went to the movies, planned a remodel (never happened of course), went to community events, and I participated in-person in a recruitment event for graduate school. My expectations for what my own personal schooling would be like were drastically altered by the pandemic. In some ways, being on Zoom for school has given me more time for my family life and pushed me to participate more in class. It has allowed me to be more confident because it made participation something I could truly control. I had always struggled with speaking in class, so the Zoom made it easier—people could only see my face. One of the surprising benefits of this last year is really the evaluation it gives us for our lives. We are able to reflect and think on the people and things that truly matter. It gave us time to pause and evaluate on the people who have maintained a strong presence in our lives and those who have not. It also made me appreciate all the social events and normal daily experiences that I had taken for granted. So, for one year out life is starting to have promise again. Several family members of mine have received the vaccine, including my eighty-year-old mom. So, the stress about her welfare and safety is starting to lift. Congress passed the American Rescue Plan yesterday and President Biden will sign it tomorrow. This gives me hope that people who have struggled financially this last year will start to get some relief. It reminds me of how fortunate we are not to deal with the stress of financial despair on top of everything else. More and more people are getting vaccinated with goals being passed ahead of schedule and government officials are increasingly getting more excited about a sooner return to normal. I am thinking about vacations again and making plans. My kids will go back to school next year, that is something I am almost certain about. There is light at the end of this dark tunnel, and I am beginning to see it.

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This item was submitted on March 11, 2021 by [anonymous user] using the form “Share Your Story” on the site “A Journal of the Plague Year”:

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