Some Candid Thoughts About Facing This Pandemic Head-on. Coronavirus Update - Day 134 and Counting..
I have seen a few articles recently about how "wealthy" people are paying the big bucks to lessen the pain of the pandemic. There was one today in the New York Times titled, "Making House Calls to Pamper Privately " and another yesterday titled, "Getting Through it all, Lavishly."
These are not the first two articles I have seen, in this vein, since the pandemic started. What they all seem to have in common, from my perspective, is the demarcation between the Have's and the Have-nots, when it comes to riding out the pandemic. The Have's rent private jets to take vacations they claim to "need." The private jets afford them the privilege of not being exposed to the coronavirus, like the rest of humanity who has to be while flying commercial. They hire manicurists to come to their homes to perform a simple manicure at the cost of $125 and up, while jeopardizing their health, since it has not been determined to be safe to have grooming services provided by someone in your home, according to the article. They hire nannies (preferably with experience as camp counselors) for $30 an hour and up, to re-create camp experiences at home so that their kids aren't deprived of the traditional summer camp experience for the summer. They also rent movie theatres for $350 a pop, to watch a two-hour movie so that they don't miss out on the full movie-going experience.
I understand that newspapers have to cover all sides of a story, but I must say that reading these articles in particular, really gets under my skin. The irony is that they are usually placed alongside another article chronicling some other class of people's misfortune, be it losing their businesses, unemployment benefits, or even a loved one to COVID-19.
I was sharing my feelings about these articles with a like-minded friend this morning, while out on my walk. I was reflecting on how different our experience has been. Admittedly, my family is blessed and has it better than many I hear or read about. We live in a beautiful and comfortable home, in a safe community, with plenty of food on the table and most importantly, we are healthy.
Even though by most standards we would be considered privileged, the one thing I have tried not to do is to live in a bubble, ignoring the reality of what is going on in the world right now. I have not shielded my children from the reality of the pandemic, nor the issues of social injustice plaguing our country. I have made a concerted effort to do just the opposite.
In doing so, I have tried to create a sense of banding together for the common good, within our little family unit. As a result of taking this more difficult and sometimes painful road, I have experienced so many gifts, within my own family, as we trudge through these difficult times. The kids have risen to the occasion time-and-time again, by helping me or each other, whenever necessary.
When I arrive home from Costco, with an SUV full of groceries, my little helpers race out to the car to make sure everything gets emptied and put away in its proper place. During distance learning, in the Spring, the kids helped each other with schoolwork and even this summer, have been lending one another a hand as they get through their summer review workbooks in preparation for the next leg of distance learning. They make their beds in the morning, do the laundry, empty the dishwasher and vacuum the kitchen at night. They pick up their rooms, help me cook meals, and do their best to pitch in with keeping the house neat and clean. When they see me feeling overwhelmed, they offer to help and even reach out with a warm hug when things seem especially overwhelming.
So much good has come from us living in the reality of the times, rather than avoiding it. We have good conversations about politics, being of help to others, and keeping our fellow citizens safe and healthy, by wearing masks. There may only be five of us, but as a family, I feel we have a true sense of community, a deep caring for one another, and an unwavering commitment to a common purpose. The ads may say, "We'll get through this together" but that's not necessairly what I have been seeing on the news nor reading in the paper. However, it is what I have been experiencing in my own home.
When my kids look back on this time, I want them to remember it exactly how it was. I want them to know the hardships we faced as well as those faced by others.. I want them to remember the pain that so many people suffered, especially those who lost loved ones to this ravaging virus. What I don't want is for them to look back on this through rose-colored glasses.
It is also important to me that they remember the goodness that came from this. I hope they recall, with fondness, all the family meals we had together, the lovely evening walks with our pug, the time spent planning and helping to plant our new garden, the baking marathons, the unrushed mornings, and even the monotony of pandemic life.
God-willing, we will never experience anything like this again in our lifetimes. That is why I have chosen to embrace this experience for my family, rather than buying my way out of a reality that most have no choice but to face and endure.
On a lighter note, please enjoy our photos from today.
Miles hamming it up for Catherine this morning.
Ever the jokester.
Catherine took this artistic photo of me doing my own pedicure this morning. It's not rocket-science!
Miles found his beloved Perry, the Peregrine Falcon this morning. He had been missing for weeks and presumed to be lost forever, when he was found inside the couch in the guest-room. The reunion was one for the books.
Perry got his own push in the swing after he and Miles were reunited.
How cute are these little feet hanging out from the bottom of the swing?
Miles and Catherine, my dynamic duo, found and trapped a wasp in this Critter Container. They brought it in the house to share with us. I was a bit freaked out, but nothing compared to the snake on the porch last month.
The wasp, which we humanely let go after observing for a few minutes.
Miles, watching Catherine, our resident salad-making-expert. He asked her if she had been making the salad since she was a baby. I think she wanted to say yes.
She let him help add the nuts., which was quite benevolent of her.
Wild Alaskan Salmon with a Yogurt Dill Sauce.
Ancini di Pepe Pasta with Fresh Mint and Feta.
Catherine and Miles' Delectable Salad.
Another tooth bites the dust. Two teeth gone in a space of three nights. That may be a world record? Either way, Graham was proud (and relieved).