I have to admit to some crazy, nerdy, scandalous and somewhat embarrassing excitement when they said we were going home from school and being quarantined.
Is it horrible? Absolutely.
Do I love these types of situations? Certainly not.
But maybe...there is a part of me that thrives here. I am not at all sure what that says about me.
I have always loved apocalyptic movies. I love the hope that always seems to come from overcoming whatever odds are against the characters. I love the resourcefulness that comes from not having at hand what you normally would have. I love that you tend to bond with folks you might not normally bond with. Seriously - I totally geek out over all the ways you can use the things at hand for something else.
Do I actually want to be in that situation? Absolutely NOT.
But here are some things I things I learned from our Sheltering at Home adventure.
We did indeed become resourceful. I made masks from t-shirts several different ways. Of course we are blessed to have the internet and access to other's brilliant thinking, but I took their ideas and made them work for our family.
I implemented outside time for our family...knowing the boys would want to be in mostly gaming when they weren't doing school. I made sure I had things they would enjoy doing outside and started making meals to eat on the back porch. This has been a huge blessing. There is a lot of talk that goes on out there. We linger longer when we are on the back porch. The weather has certainly been a gift from God and has helped that so much. I have been so grateful!
My husband and I have gotten closer. I know many have said it has been harder. And it truly is in some ways. His and my working from home causes some clashes that we are having to learn to maneuver around. But honestly - I like him here. We have taken to walking together. We are trying to read what the other enjoys. He will not listen to my music ( I get it - I am a bubble gum pop girl and it is not very cool or sophisticated of me ) - but he loves me in spite of it. I have learned to love some of his moody Americana music. I am reading articles he sends me, and he is reading articles I send him and we TALK about it. Amazing. I am smarter for it.
I am taking Spanish. I have a Latin community at the high school that I love and sometimes there is a barrier that my speaking Spanish will overcome. I am working toward it and have been excited about getting back with my students and learning to communicate.
I made TAMALES! I did. It was fun. And delicious. There is a learning curve. But next time I know how to make it easier. I would never have done this prior to all this time I have been gifted.
I am getting certification in some things that will help me be a better para-educator for my special needs classes. I have to be proactive in my search - but it will be so helpful once I complete them. Once again - never would have done this on my own. I would have looked to the administration to ask me to do it. Maybe they would have - if it had been necessary - but generally not something that they require. The fact that it makes ME better able to serve the students I minister to daily is enough to make it worth it.
I am cleaning out. I have become more organized. I am finding a place for everything or giving it away or throwing it away. This is a huge lesson in learning to simplify. And I love simple. LOVE IT. I love my home now. This is a blessing. I have hated this little cluttered place. It made me overwhelmed. The time that has been gifted to be able to focus on how to live better where I am is - well it is absolutely a gift.
I have my two 20 year olds with me. They would be away from me during this time. They are adults now and in college. I would not have had them with me for the last several weeks. I know they would rather be at school. They miss their friends. But I have loved having them here. I have had to learn to curb my critcisms...knowing the things they are still working through will eventually come to pass. They are still maturing and finding who they are. I try to suggest and then leave them to process Really it is more of a learning process for me. But being able to wrap my arms around them and kiss their sweet faces has been over and above anything I could have asked for.
When I look back at what I have written it seems pretty self involved - which let's face it - I really am. But as much as I feel life has been interrupted - the biggest interruption being church and schools in my opinion, there has been much to be grateful for. I have had fear, I have had sorrow, I have worried about what is going to happen next. But I have learned to find the joy in the midst of the scary. God has shown himself to be close to me, even when I did not move toward him.
COVID19 has been an exercise in trusting God in the next thing. I have to pull my thoughts back and corral them in the here and now. God has given me everything I need for this moment. And I trust he will for the next moment as well - I try not to let my mind go there. I choose rather to trust that his grace is good for whatever good or hard thing comes. I have to believe that. I pray you can do the same. His grace is sufficient.
2 Corinthians 12:9
9But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.