Saturday, March 28, 2020

She's Back with Coffee and Contemplation in These Covid-19 Days

She's back! With a steaming latte, sun streaming through the balcony, and her lounge pants as the work uniform of the day.

I Never went away.

Just enrolled in seminary and engaged in three years of intensive study, writing, contemplating, and trying to put spiritual meat on my social justice bones.

I'm a womanist, always have been, and while an introvert, wondered what my good in the world could entail. One of the reasons I went to seminary was a credential I needed for some of the spaces I wanted to enter. My daughters were getting older and as I saw their Post-2016 world unfolding under someone who clearly was unfit to lead, I wondered about centering spirituality, study, and sisterhood.

Now, here I am, back, in these Covid-19 times. My state is rapidly increasing with cases.

What in the world happened between watching my high school Class of 2020 daughter contemplate college choices, go on an orchestra competition trip in early March, to come back to the world literally shutting down?

Things have been moving at the speed of light and like many, I watched what was happening in China, Italy, and wondered what our CDC and administration was doing about it.

It seemed that they knew back in November. We could have been safe-at-home during winter break. I could have skipped the faith and social justice conference in Las Vegas in February when we were in the heat of the Democratic primary season. I would have certainly checked our toilet paper inventory before there was a mad rush to the stores two weeks ago. (sidebar, who doesn't keep cleaning products, toilet paper, and soap in their house on the regular?, anyway...)

It has been a whirlwind of rapidly postponing events since March 13th when my daughters returned to a spring break that wouldn't be. College admitted student days were canceled and are moving to virtual. There went prom, her debutante, and for some, graduation. Colleges closed. The wise churches and places of worship closed. Everyone started to discover they could actually work remotely and Zoom was a thing.

While no one for sure is certain they don't have the virus, we have taken every precaution, including staying in as much as we could (we had a family emergency that required a trip before the hospitals shut down last week). We have made the best of it as we could. The girls spring break extended three more days (snow days) until the teachers figured out how to do online school for 5000 kids in our school district. Life will forever be altered.

I live in the St. Louis County area. The first reported case was around the 3rd or 4th. A wealthy twenty-year-old girl returned from Italy to Chicago, took the train from O'Hare to St. Louis and became ill. She was tested at the hospital near me and was told to self-quarantine. Her dad disobeyed that order and took his younger daughter to a swanky Daddy-Daughter Dance on the 7th. They lawyered up. They live in one of the Uber-wealthy suburbs.

There are rapidly increasing cases. A young thirty-one year old died last week. She was the first. She didn't have underlying health problems.

This thing is moving so fast and exposing all the flaws of the America in a way that will either shatter us forever or motivate us to renew refreshed for everyone's sake. We are truly our brother's and sister's keeper in these Covid-19 Days.

So, what do we do?

If you are like me, you make sure there is plenty of coffee and milk/creamer alternatives in case you can't get out. You survey your home for a place of respite. You look at all the unread books on your shelf. You adjust to pajamas as work uniform. You spend time with family. You connect with family and friends via technology. and most of all, you stay in.

With latte in hand.

Waiting for the day of sunshine.

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