I'm not sure what got you through this pandemic, but for me it's been Skype, Zoom, and Emails from friends all over the world. Though I hunkered inside most of the past year, I've been able to keep in contact with so many old friends. I didn't have to give up my book discussion groups or my Orange County Peace Corps connections. I even was able to reconnect with friends in my Colville, WA, branch of American Association of University Women and Colville library group and see their faces again, if only on my laptop screen.
But my heart still tells me I want to be in the real world, not the virtual world of this computer. It rang true again last night with I watched the Screen Actors Guild awards show, Facebook messaging with my actor friend in Miami, FL. We've been enjoying our ritual for years, during all the movie and television awards shows together.
One of my closest companions confided to me this morning that the venerable Dr. Fauci predicts that by next year we'll actually be able to go unmasked to movie theater again. Some museums have actually reopened to limited masked patrons.
Though I've been dining with that companion and others at outdoor restaurants for months now, this coming weekend I'm even going to sit inside a steakhouse with my son and daughter-in=law.
I'm beginning to appreciate more and more the convenience of where I live, close to friends, to supermarkets, to the post office to mail packages, without having to drive on icy winter roads. Had I not been here in my tiny shoebox senior living apartment, the isolation and my increasing unsteadiness because of balance issues connected with spinal stenosis would have made life unbearable.
I've been managing, instead. Maybe not thriving, but managing. I've learned how to change the background on my Skype and Zoom, which showcases me in settings more exotic than my bedroom. It's been a diversion to find ones that represent places I wish I were or places I once loved. The photo on the left I took from a window at the Orangerie in Paris in November, 2019, the last overseas trip I took.
I haven't written anything new for a while, but I've been involved as a reviewer on several Federal grant funding opportunities for Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and other Health and Human Services brances, getting paid to sit in front of my computer and update my LCSW knowledge about best practices.
The Rose Center Theater outdoor concerts, Uncle Pete's patio dining just a mile from me, my library system that's supplied me with DVDs and books via curbside or "grab and go" have made it better. Looking ahead to brighter days makes it better. Sitting in my old glider rocker in the evening, reading or streaming another episode of whatever old series I missed the first time around, makes it better.
Being fully vaccinataed now and able to hug a few friends who also have been, gives me hope. As has escaping coming down ill with the Covid-19 virus. At my advanced age, I may have had a very low possibility of surviving that.
The increasing availability of vaccines, no constant election campaigning, not planning my day around how to find toilet paper or hand sanitizer? Yep. It's getting better!
Here's how the Sargeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club band first told us all those years ago that it's getting better: