Life Goes On

By R.L. Witter

“Sometimes we must be strong/You know that life goes on for us if we can’t be together/Don’t cheat yourself/Happiness is ‘round the corner/It will come to you/So have faith in future love ‘cuz there’s heaven up above/When we think we’ve reached the end/The World keeps on spinning” — The Brand New Heavies

I have found myself struggling. March will mark one year since the addition of COVID-19 to my usual germaphobia and neuroses turned everything upside down. The first several months were okay for me. Truth be told, I don’t enjoy large groups or gatherings. So, staying home wasn’t much of a struggle or imposition. We’ve been seeing friends and family via Zoom, FaceTime, and Facebook Rooms, and are grateful for the technology that allows us to keep in contact.

We’ve been blessed to remain healthy; but that has meant almost total isolation. We’ve watched more television than we care to admit and completed at least 50 jigsaw puzzles. Hubby honed his already-stellar cooking skills, so we’ve also gained some weight. I think we’ve gotten take-out food three times in the past year, and each time it has paled in comparison to Hubby’s creations.

By September I was in need of more stimulation and interaction. We met a couple of friends at a lake about 90 minutes from home. We maintained social distance and were able to enjoy an afternoon of in-person conversation accompanied by beautiful scenery and a spectacular sunset. Toward the end of October, we visited those friends in their backyard around their fire pit. I began to see cracks in my façade in November when I realized it would be too cold to continue our social, outdoor evenings. Soon after, I found myself feeling listless and disinterested in any and everything. I wasn’t ready to gather indoors with people, but how else would we maintain our limited interactions with the two people who were now our entire in-person social circle?

After months without hair and nail appointments, massages, travel, dining out, filling the gas tank, etc., I had a little money saved for a rainy day. I decided to invest it in the next sunny day and renovated some outdoor space to make in-person gatherings a possibility. Thanks to some new patio furniture and a few patio heaters, we’re able to enjoy socially-distant socializing on warmer weekend afternoons. It’s just the four of us, but we enjoy a little slice of normalcy as we sip hot tea or cocoa. Hubby has even fired up the grill a few times. I can also revel in the quiet beauty of nature, read a book, pray, or crochet a bit. I have to make a blanket for a new addition to the family who will be arriving in May.

I guess as long as the sun comes up each morning, birds continue to sing, and babies are being born, life goes on. Like everything else, this, too shall pass. The world keeps on spinning.