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Social Distancing Day 1

A year from now, or ten years or twenty years, we’ll talk about that time in 2020 when we thought the world was going to end because of a pandemic. How we all made horrid attempts at homeschooling our children and people hoarded tissue and hand sanitizer like they were gold bars. We’ll reminisce about playing games as a family, fighting over who got more electronic time, and cooking more meals at home.

For today, though, we’re in survival mode. The introverts are content and happy, while the extroverts look like drug addicts who need a fix. I went to the grocery story today for syrup and ran into a friend. I kept my six feet of distance, but I told her all the details of our lives for the last week as though she was my therapist. I talked to my mom for a straight hour when I got home.

I work remotely already. On a regular day I may not see another adult until my husband gets home. To keep from losing my mind I schedule lunch with friends and go to workout classes. All those things have been cancelled.

Today I printed out math worksheets for my children. They were just as thrilled as everyone else’s kids. Funny how last week it was an electronic free-for-all and now we’re being told we need to start figuring out how to homeschool our kids. It’s the first day, by Friday most of us will be back to being electronic safe havens.

My kids also harassed my parents’ cat, cleaned the bathrooms, walked on the treadmill, and bickered. I’m not sure what’s left to do tomorrow. Maybe an all-out brawl over an iPad charger.

In the early 90s, we had an ice storm. Electricity was out at our house for ten days. The roads were covered in ice so we physically couldn’t go anywhere. We played at least a hundred rounds of Uno and read by candlelight. One of my sisters caught her hair on fire trying to wash her face. After a few days somebody walked to town for groceries. Folks at the grocery store would take customers through the store with a flashlight.

They didn’t call it social distancing then, just common sense. At least we have electricity and internet in these modern days. And nobody’s yelling at me to get off the phone because they want to call their friend.

It’s raining now. Maybe we’ll have enough mud for wrassling tomorrow. That would count as PE class right?


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