Within a week, our world here changed. While we watched the news of the Corona virus spreading into our state with announcements about “social distance” and virtual classrooms, everything from March Madness to soccer season, stopped.My girls’ first response was anxiety and panic. Questions about how to get back into the school for various belongings and projects or having no homework packet began to surface. We’d all been so conditioned to be on the gerbil wheel of a schedule. That comfort of regularity ended abruptly.
As a small business owner, I panicked a bit, too. A tee shirt booth I had at a festival was cancelled. Classes lined up for the garden center beginning next week are on hold. I teach once a week at a small school and while their spring break is next week, I question what will happen the week we’re to return. Plans for our own spring break changed as well. We had planned a trip to Chicago to look at colleges for my oldest daughter, but the campuses are now closed.
But here’s the thing. This time of quiet is a gift. How many of us spend our lives in and out of our cars, on and off the phone planning, scheduling, wedging our lives into multiple events day after day after day? Quite frankly, it’s exhausting. Few of us can say “no” to our kids that want to join yet one more seasonal sport. We can’t politely decline an invitation to be on another committee. We agree to evening meetings when we’d rather be at home with family.
Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy being involved in my girls’ lives. I like to serve in my community. I enjoy rolling up my sleeves and digging into a meaningful project. But honestly- I’m kind of excited to take days one at a time with no schedule. I’m looking forward to sleeping in instead of waking at 6:15 to get my daughter off to the bus. I’m going to catch up on reading that I rarely get a chance to do. And, I’ll likely make a lot of soup! Being in the kitchen chopping things makes me happy. I won’t be making much money these next several weeks, and that is OK.
Take advantage of this gift of quiet. Enjoy the slow pace. Get out some board games with your family. Read a book. Take a hike outside. Indulge in a nap if you like. The world is upside down right now. And I’m going to enjoy it while it lasts.