April 11 seems to be the day. I didn’t pick it or plan for it.
Today is the day my life moved from BCV (Before Covid19) to beginning to piece together my PCV (Post Covid19) future forward self. But first a moment on what budged me, at last.
The day began with a remote version of my round the table out loud reading group. We normally meet 2x a month in person to explore Jewish writer, usually in America though of diverse origins and epochs.
I then had the delight to witness my granddaughter blowing candles out on a deluxe made-at-home-by-her- mom, birthday cake. This was via Messenger on her dad’s iPhone, with the other grands via their devices. Each of our trio of home based participants in separate cities. She sweetly invited me to come when it was safe again to be with her for her 7th birthday. Time flies and so must I if I want to see my nuclear family. Being the one living farthest from siblings, nephews, nieces and now children and their families in another city cut me most deeply today.
“Life cycle” events will do that. We’ve just passed the season’s big openers of Passover Seders, in the middle of Easter weekend and on the horizon Vaisakhi and soon after, Ramadan.
It’s a big time for most of the world and the WHOLE world is in some kind of cautious isolation.
It’s like we are all in the cast of Rod Serling’s 156 Twilight Zone episodes. You might relate. OUTSIDE our shutters are blossoms and breezes. There are construction workers and the noise of refuse and recycling trucks. Delivery persons in small vans or bicycles with backpacks or little wooden sheds drop off groceries, medications, take out food orders. Essential services from plumbers to home care workers are experiencing a different Covid life that us, cooped up – and cooperating with social distancing.
I have enough food – not everyone does. I can get more if I take precautions – and I must as we are battling an invisible foe. I have the means and still have the motivation to make meals, to clean up and reach out via any of the many modes of communication we are so gifted to have in this tech age. Grooming has taken a few shortcuts and my hair is on holiday. In this I am not alone!
INSIDE not much has changed for many of us who work and live alone, in the same comfortable cell that is our home. It is only our ability to escape at will and recreate elsewhere. Procrastinate, percolate or dally over dinners, or errands or random entertainments. Only the outside and how and when we engage with it has changed.
Yet, have you also found yourself on an unexpected inner journey?
Normally, I shun the world ‘journey’. For me, it has gone the way of passion and innovation and those other words that evoke little anymore due to overuse.
Yet, it is a journey. A classic hero’s journey. Each of us is invited to enter a different path and experience a unique outcome at the end of each day in our common quarantine. Each day.
Today, after a day full of seeing some family and talking on the phone to others, and of exchanging greetings with friends for our various holidays…..now about four weeks into this new regimen we are all observing – I finally felt it.
The full weight of this situation in my solo state. And, I determined to move forward with no more deferrals. Not back to ‘normal’, to better, to authentic. Perhaps viewing this hour long Passover holiday presentation aimed at raising funds for the work of the CDC – pushed me over the edge. There is laughter and learning here and it is based on more than 3,000 years of journeys.
It is the story of Passover – relayed in story and song coming at you from the living spaces of stars, rabbis and various celebrities. Yet, it is every person’s and every group’s or faith’s story. The scenes and symbols are eternal and extraordinarily relevant.
Enjoy it, even if you skip around in it.
Here’s to this season of renewal.