This afternoon, our small group of four friends—and eight dogs—came together for some puppy playtime fun.
It’s been a full month already. First, the governor urged Vermonters to not meet with others outside our own households.
Then, I had the pre-surgery quarantine requirements.
That dovetailed nicely with the quarantine requirements for one of the friends—because her daughter was diagnosed with COVID. (She’s recovered fully now, thankfully.)
Add in our Berner’s first heat (and two still intact males)… combine with 20 inches of snow that blanketed the fields and impeded dogs’ running space… mix in holiday preparations in general… and you have ample reasons for not being able to enjoy an hour or two with friends.
But beyond that, I am realizing that I was letting the news and the fears crush my spirit.
From the very beginning of this, the USA has not had a national plan—and the states have not reacted at all similarly.
This past fall, I’ve been frustrated when I see parent friends in other states posting photos of their kids going to school without masks, playing sports just like always and taking the school bus. Here in Vermont, my daughter had in-person classes only once a week. She wore a mask constantly. The soccer bus kept windows for maximum air flow, no matter the weather. It seems like more a sacrifice when our area seems to be so much more restrictive.
Even within our own household, we don’t have the same level of concern. Some of us believe holing up in our home is just fine, thank you very much. Some of us try to meet up with people on a very limited basis. Others insist on going out with friends and say that mask-wearing, staying outside and continually watching for social distancing is asking too much.
We have months still before we can return to the lifestyle we knew as normal. I had begun to despair that we were all doomed to isolation for the rest of the winter.
Today I begin to feel like I’m finding a bit of life again. My sons return from playing two games of lacrosse, both invigorated from the interaction and the physical activity. The dogs come home worn out from their wild run with friends. My daughter eagerly shows off her action photos from her afternoon of shooting the crazy antics of our canine friends. And I feel more like myself after being around people for just a short two hours.
Remembering that we all need to find our balance… another lesson learned from the pandemic… another silver lining.