So much has changed in the past weeks. Life has flipped upside down. The stores we worked so hard to open are now closed. The team we worked with every day are gone. Going outside feels unsafe and the daily interactions with friends and neighbors that we took for granted have been replaced by zoom conferences. We are now our children’s teachers.
Last week felt like a process of grieving - saying goodbye to a way of being. This week has a different feel, and we have discovered that not everything is scary and bad. True, the news sounds grim, but all the more reason to tune it out and tune in to what’s right in front of us.
Here are 3 things we have found to smile about:
1. Spending more time with family
Being at home with our kids is a challenge, but also an opportunity. Besides our vacations, we have never been around them this much. Last week we were still struggling with how to manage, but this week we are beginning to find a schedule and with that, more space to breathe and enjoy.
We start the day with homeschool - a zoom conference for each kid with their class. Next, we spend the hours from 10-12 working with online class work. Just after noon, we make some lunch and then go outside (while keeping a safe distance of course). In the evenings, we have taken to playing board games and staying up just a little late.
2. Catching up on reading
When was the last time you read a book? We had gotten into a bad routine of work, rushed family time, and then netflix. Suddenly we have so much more space in the schedule. Finding the time for an afternoon read opens up the mind and allows for creativity to return.
3.Reconnecting with old friends
We all fall into routines. Especially in Brooklyn, often the closest friendships we have are with those closest in distance to us. In normal times, we meet up with our neighborhood friends for diners, parties and outings.
In this new reality, connecting in person means via a screen. The benefit of that is that distance doesn’t matter - five blocks or 500 miles is the same online. That has opened up the world and rekindled friendships all over. We skyped with friends in Oregon, Facetimed with a buddy in Texas and have routine zoom conferences with family in California and Vancouver. It’s been amazing to see these faces and reminds us just how big our extended community is.
We’re all in this together. It’s far from easy, but let’s take a moment to find a silver lining in this cloud.