Things I Have Lost in This Pandemic

This morning was beautiful. Pink, rising sky painted over with a wide swath of sky blue grey. I know that coral gesture meant "sailors take warning," but it was awfully lovely at the time. It being Sunday, I had intended to wander the house until a brilliant idea about spirituality and hope and victory over grief emerged. Then, I lost my cup of coffee. People, MY HOUSE IS NOT BIG. Universe, I demand an explanation for your injustice.

Just add that to the list of Things I Have Lost in This Pandemic, below for your commiserating pleasure. Each is worthy of shaken fists held to the sky:

2. My saxophone strap. Every day. I pass all three of them in their various hiding places, every day, and I note, "Ah, there it is!" Then, when it's time to play, I forget where those places were.

3. My cell phone. Gone, every five minutes. Which is strange, because I look at it every five seconds.
Yes, he has removed his pants.

4. My patience. Oh, like a million times. With people who leave dishes in the living room. Crumbs on the breadboard. Breadboard on the counter. Socks on the floor next the couch. Craft supplies everywhere. Pokemon figures stashed in places you didn't even know your house had. People who blink. People who breathe.

5. Easy access to my childhood. Next door, Mt. Pleasant School is being turned into luxury apartments. A fence is going up right now, blocking public access that has existed since before the Spanish flu. I can't even. You can read more about my feelings on that in the Old Colony. That's where I'm sending them. If they don't print, I'll post it here someday.

6. My motivation. "If I only had time, I would..." Yep. Turns out, now that it's about time to do them, not doing them wasn't about time at all. And besides, we're in a pandemic. Charlie Parker doesn't quite seem like the right soundtrack.

7. My size 10 jeans. But that doesn't matter. They're too small now.

8. My 5:00 sobriety. Because the daily ritual now verges on sacred. (Don't worry; I rarely go beyond one, sometimes two. But I sure like that one.)

9. My passion for things that bark a lot. I still love him. It's not his fault. He's still super cute. But he barks A LOT.

10. My belief in institutions, chief among them: state education standards. I really thought kindergarten was great, and I adore our teacher, and I adore our neighborhood school. Still, I deeply questioned state standards when I was given a "persuasive writing assignment" to do with my five year old. HE'S $#(*$$ FIVE. He will happily sound out "poo," "pee," "fart," and "bum" when some brilliant educator writes them in big black letters on an index card, because she knows we read what we care about. But identify a problem and write out three elements of that problem when he still can't write words? I wrote the essay for him, in three words: Not. Developmentally. Appropriate. Not for my kid, anyway. Now I'm thinking that spending 10 minutes on a downloaded reading worksheet or book is just fine. Then we'll spend the rest of the day hanging out in the tree fort we made in the Hollow yesterday.

Bonus:  My F$#cks.  I lost them, most of them, but in a good way! It works out, because when you don't have them, you can't give them anymore. The key to happiness.

Maybe I'll grow my hair even longer, wear looser clothes, and join the league of hippie lady homeschool friends who let their kids run like cute furry animals in the woods all day. Those kids and those moms all seem pretty happy to me.



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