I have avoided going out of late, keeping up my part of the bargain, but the package I should’ve mailed in January was becoming part of our furniture and so I made a fast dash to the post office.
I saw a friend there, not the kind of friend you wave to or shout good to see you, but the kind whose presence must always be met with hugs. There we were, two extros with no way to vert. We settled on a foot-five, and IOUs for bear hugs and beers sometime beyond this wild time.
I drove home thinking about this weekend being Easter, and how it used to be a time for my siblings and me to see our mom and make fun of my sister’s Hollandaise sauce. But she’s been gone fifteen years, and my mom thirteen, so I’ve had time to adjust to that ‘new normal.’
But it’s not normal. And there isn’t an adjustment to be made. The absence of them makes my heart melancholy, though I have developed the habit of replacing the sad feeling with happy memories, because, why the hell not? My mother told me to do that, and she was right. It helps immeasurably.
It’s not the new normal to not hug a huggable friend. Or step out into the road to avoid contact with others walking in the neighborhood. It’s not normal to clean the counters so frequently, take your temperature obsessively, or sew face masks out of tee-shirts. It is only temporal.
We’ll come out the other side, us feisty humans, and we may even wash our hands better and avoid buffets more, and certainly we will get back to hugging and crowding and cutting in line again. In time.
Until then, on a breezy day like today, we can let the wind in through the billowing curtains and welcome the smell of spring, the chirp of birds, the stream of sun.
Here’s a very fine thought from Anais Nin:
“Throw your dreams into space like a kite, and you do not know what it will bring back, a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country.”
Today’s art is made from flower petals, lavender sprigs, and Anais Nin’s words.