I've been thinking a lot lately about how we measure our days.
Today is Monday, another Monday in Covid19.
At the top of my planner is a note, "Tentative last week of Covid-19." That is what they told us when we entered the still-unknown-world of what the spread would be. March 22, driving back from Kansas City, we received the news that the stay-at-home order was issued by the Mayors of both major cities. Effective March 23rd, all schools, non-essential offices, stores, etc. were to be closed and except for trips to the grocery store or medical appointments, everyone was to stay home.
When the order was issued, we were still in the gray area.
We had been in Kansas City the days prior because our oldest son had been shot and was not expected to live. He was in the ICU and that hospital had begun Covid19 shut-down earlier that week. He was shot on the night of March 17. They let us in to see him but once he was stable after the third day, they told us no more visitors. Each day we came, they moved the entrance and enhanced the screening of those on the list to come in.
Covid19 was far from our mind at that time and we hadn't made the mad dash to get toilet paper and had our usual food runs.
One month later and we are measuring our days.
My son survived what they said he would not survive. He is recuperating at home with his fiancee and has a nurse visiting 3x a week to attend to his wound vac. It was safer for him to be at home than to be in the hospital.
The family hasn't been back to see him because we are adhering to strict guidelines for his safety. Gatherings of more than ten have been banned in major cities. Even that ridiculous gathering of idiots wanting to rush the economy open was technically illegal under most state Covid 19 measures. We have decided to stay in with only one of us making the runs to the grocery store.
My daughters will join other classmates in online learning.
My friends are trying to keep some semblance of normal routine, even if none of us have bothered to put on anything more than a t-shirt and sweat pants.
My religious friends and fellow ministers have been providing pastoral care, from a distance, and attending to what we mark of this spiritual moment.
I'm measuring days.
Of loved ones lost to this unseen mass killer. Of news reports and governor press conferences and of idiotic rushes to claim lost lives are still a good job if they are under a certain number.
It feels very much like walking on waves.
I already work at home, so that did not change and as of last week, still received my compensation. I have food, water, electricity, toilet paper, and plenty of movies, books, and crafts to keep us entertained. The family has weathered this and in some ways, welcomed the early part of a slower pace, family meals, and an open schedule.
What do we do with notices of indefinite quarantine? Cancelled springs. Postponed graduations. Uncertainty. Unmooring. Unknowing.
I am not the keeper of time. Ecclesiastes tells me there is a time for everything under the sun, even this. Even in this measuring of days by looking at the calendar, each one somewhat like the next, marking online service on Sunday to the next online service on Sunday, trying to keep Friday night and Saturday as weekend days we had before, not fussing at my daughters to get up, trying to keep a normal schedule of school work since our state is still in session, except for the seniors. I am not the keeper of time, but I am measuring it.
One day, I may look back on this season and long for the stillness, the quietness, the unhurriedness of it and hope that I cherished each day as a gift. Even, still. It is a gift.