Reflections on a Year in a Pandemic

by - Monday, March 15, 2021

One year ago, we bought our first house. We closed on a Friday, moved in on Monday and by Tuesday were bracing for lockdowns. 


The last time we had a drink in a bar, celebrating closing on our house.

Those two things will forever be linked in my brain. Before moving, I remembered that my goal was to be settled enough to have a house-warming party the first weekend of April. 

On the day of the move, the man in charge of our moving crew shook my hand when he arrived. It seemed normal for a minute, until I remembered thinking maybe we shouldn't have done that. It still wasn't a completely crazy thing to do -- but it would become just that very soon. 

As we settled into the house, we also attempted to adjust to pandemic life. My husband has a job that requires him to be in the office. In those early days, he worked 7 days per week, 12+ hours per day. Easter Sunday was his first day off in more than a month. 


Our celebratory Easter dinner

We were both constantly worried he was going to bring covid home to me. He'd get home from work, change and take a shower before really saying hi. He slept in the guest bedroom for months -- I think maybe until June. 

And despite all of that, we have been incredibly lucky throughout this pandemic. So far, neither of us has gotten sick -- a small miracle considering there were cases early on at my husband's work. No one in our immediate families have gotten sick either, and most of our immediate friends and families are still healthy and employed. 

Our hardships this past year have been small in comparison to so many families who have lost loved ones or who have lost jobs, businesses, livelihoods. 

And yet, as we live through a period of time that will be written and studied in history books, I find it important to reflect on and document the changes from this year. In my life, these have been smaller-scale losses -- friends' weddings rescheduled or canceled, the inability to visit family or hold our friends' new babies. It's the loss of in-person races or gathering with friends to watch sports or the ability to travel freely. 

In the grand scheme of things, individually these are all small losses, but taken together, they are the stuff that make up the fabric of our lives.

And because I don't want to look back on this year and only remember the bad, there have been a few small, simple things that I have come to appreciate in a way I probably never would have before. 

I've come to appreciate not having every minute of my weekends booked up with plans. These days a walk or a hike with a friend is probably the highlight of my entire weekend, and I value that time so much more than I did pre-pandemic. 

I've discovered new parks and new trails and have come to embrace a more exploratory mindset when all my typical go-to social activities are off limits. I've learned to appreciate and enjoy a quick day trip instead of a far-flung vacation across the ocean. 


These little things became more important and significant because a lot of our typical big things were gone. 

And as much as I cannot wait for covid case numbers to decrease and normal life to resume again, I hope to carry the appreciation for these small things with me and remember that just because I can schedule a million really fun things all at once, I don't always have to. 

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