As the days become weeks, the weeks feel like months and a month feels like a year… I struggle to grasp a sense of time that feels right for where it makes sense to “be” in the midst of a pandemic.
I comb my body to see if anything has changed… has my hair gotten longer? Have I gained or lost weight? Do my fingernails need to be cut? Then I move to my mental state. Where am I in the 5 stages of grief? Am I on track? Did I regress? Am I still in shock? And then I realize that none of it matters.
The elusion of being told when something will be over no longer exists in this current time and space. It is and will be on going. It’s how I choose to respond and face my inner fears about myself, my relationships and the universe that is all that matters anymore. Eek. That’s scary to say. The things that I have told myself will define me and will provide feelings of accomplishment and “success” have been thrown out the window.
It’s just me holding me.
It’s me letting parts of my body (alright, fine, my heart) sing for the first time in a long time. It’s the moments of joy that I experience as I sit out on the stoop and have the neighborhood boy, Jonah, stroll up beside me and strike up a conversation.
The unstoppable smile that broke out on my face as he shared his love of dinosaurs, dragons, elves and wizards and his 7 year old perspective of the virus. The look on my face when we talked about The Hobbit and I shared my thoughts on Bilbo Baggins only to have him remind me not to forget his favorite, Frodo. Or when I asked him if he would like to play basketball when it was safe to do so again and he told me that it was one of his favorite sports but he thought we needed five people to make a team. I told him that we could play 1x1 and that I wanted to give him a heads up that I’m pretty good so he shouldn’t be surprised if I beat him only to have him respond that he is pretty good at sports too and not be afraid if he beats me.
Before I could ask him another question, his dad called his name to come back inside. I wished him a Happy Easter before he left and he stopped and told me he didn’t celebrate Easter but he wished me a happy one as well.
As he skipped away with his impromptu bat (a bamboo stick), I felt this immense joy erupt inside of me. The child-like joy of seeing another human being in their raw, authentic, and unencumbered self.
The realization of the depth of my own heart that I knew was there but hadn’t let be herself in a long time. (In all fairness, starting one’s own company really did kick my ass and I adopted a very drill sergeant and militant attitude to persevere through the hard times that served me then but no longer serve me now).
I continue to ponder this thought as I wrap my headphones around my iPhone and peel myself off the stoop and continue to let that feeling of JOY course through my veins and wash over my heart and my body. I let my childhood memories emerge and things that younger Bri longed for and still longs for emerge.
I’m jolted slightly as I bring myself back to reality walking in my socks on the gravel to retrieve a painting that had caught my eye earlier that morning. You see, when I popped out of the house earlier this morning, there was a piece of artwork that he had drawn that was waiting for me outside when I walked out the door. I’m pretty sure it’s a bat. I didn’t pick it up then but something inside told me to do it now.
Why you ask? Because last week on the night of the first full moon, a bat flew over my head in that exact same spot that I sat talking to Jonah. I know that it might not seem like much but as I cling for the moments of joy, it feels like everything.
Sending you loads of joy,
I so enjoy reading your words and feeling your thoughts! Your writing speaks of the raw emotions of love, empathy and compassion.