RESILIENCE…………. Every time I thought about writing about this pandemic, my thoughts froze. Trying to sum up the magnitude of the damage, terror, and fear that we have all suffered in the name of Covid, it felt like the task was immeasurable. I struggled to capture the sheer scope of devastation when I realized, everyone already knows what the cost of this pandemic has been on all of us. Tragically, some suffered in horrific and deadly ways and all any of us could do was pray. While I shared the horror and the instability and the isolation, I also found some small measure of peace. I could only control the tiny sphere that became my world and even that was an illusion. Still it was one I needed. An illusion I clung to for all it’s worth. I wanted to remain steady and hopeful for my family in the face of the ravages of Covid. I found solace in the small things while the world’s storms wreaked havoc and sorrow. I was grateful for my family and their safety. I was relieved that my sons were home with me and their dad and not out in the world alone where my worry and fear might have consumed me altogether. Our home became our sanctuary and our escape. I felt safe and comforted here where I can be with my family and close friends and retreat from the never ending updates about the virus and it’s terrifying mutations. I find myself looking for the little moments, the quiet moments of awe and gratitude to remind me that all that I really need is right in front of me. I am looking ahead with a mixture of hope, faith, and trepidation. In the meantime, I will hold the beautiful and poignant moments in my heart and say a silent pray for those we lost, those still sick, and the people on the front lines who stood between us and this virus.

Isolation

Summer’s Here!

          Finally summer has arrived! The northeast has been pummeled with constant rain and windstorms for what seems like months. Nevertheless, my family surged over the finish line ending freshman year of high school for Noah and 6th grade for Jordan.  As I write this it really begins to hit me for the first time, I have children in high school and middle school. I mean I know that but to see it in print….

      Luckily for all of us, pre-teen angst is similar to my halftime angst. I call it halftime because it sounds better, more optimistic. Or maybe I’ve just been living with boys for too long. Middle age sounds dowdy, decrepit, and old. Like a clock slowly winding down, tick tick. Halftime sounds optimistic like there’s more of the game left to be played. There’s still time to reevaluate prior mistakes and successes, make adjustments big and small before the second half. A do over of sorts. I may be rationalizing a bit here but  a bit of self-delusion may be all I’ve got.

      Predictably, this year has been filled with the unexpected intermittent, uninvited  hot flashes, skin and body/image changes you would expect at this age. There are the inevitable mood swings, temper tantrums, irritability, interminable sleep marathons, insatiable hunger, (which can lead to tantrums, but I digress), sleep deprivation, exhaustion, talking endlessly to people who don’t seem to understand the english language, and frustration! Indecision, indifference and confusion often lead to complaints such as: “I’m bored” to “I never get to do anything fun”, and my personal favorite, “I just need time to myself.”  This daily litany and self-analysis is enough to drive a person crazy. And it’s not just about me, if you think all of that sounds beyond unbearable, the boy’s moods swings, temper tantrums and changes have been no picnic to live through either.

      Still summer is a transition and a welcome one at that. We can seclude ourselves on the deck, at the beach or tucked cozily on our beds reading (me), watching tv, playing video games, with an occasional grunt which passes for conversation, (boys). This summer I have decided to just live without a plan or a goal.  Okay decided sounds like I had a choice my sons thought otherwise.

      With the usual complaints and occasional disdain from my sons, the consensus is that: “we don’t need you to plan every minute of our day we’re older now”. Fair enough, (If only that didn’t include the constant hurrying up to wait and “oh didn’t I tell you that I need $20. and my game is 45 minutes away and I told you I need a ride and we have to pick up….Why aren’t you dressed????”). What? Nobody told me! Which is inevitably followed by the bemoaning sounds of “Oh Mom!” There is the ever-present muttering, mumbling and criticism which haunts my days and sometimes nights. Any other men/boys and I might have broken up with them by now. I mean I’m supposed to get life advice from a 15 and a 12-year-old? Yeah right, (cue eye roll). See, I’m learning.

      Since they’re so smart, I’m taking their advice. Here’s to staying loose and letting the summer unfold, teenage style. Despite the challenges of living with boys who crash into walls, spill any liquid they touch, break every glass/plate/cup we own, and don’t get me started talking about bathroom hygiene and cleanliness.,(don’t fret, a trick of the trade for teenage boys, Axe body wash, minus the body wash part), it’s gonna be a great time.

      We are living it up, enjoying life, and spending time together, mostly. We’re gonna take it easy and go where the wind takes us. It’s only half time but I like the way the first half of the game has gone so far. Here’s hoping I kick butt in the second half.