Look out, you rock-n-rollers…
If 2020 brings a list of specific words to mind, “change” would probably make it to just about everyone’s top ten.
If I’m lucky enough to have you as a Facebook pal, you’ve likely seen this photo of the modifications to my choir room. And the changes aren’t just cosmetic; they’re musical as well. Kids feel less secure in the singing sense. I’ve had lots of conversations with them mid-rehearsal, when they’ve confessed to feeling like they’re singing all by themselves: an activity many of them would rank higher on the Abject Horror Scale than jumping off a bridge, taking a ball bat to the ribcage, or walking on their lips through busted glass. Some have dropped my class over it, which is heartbreaking for me, because they’re obviously getting no more joy at all from choir. I hate that.
Change is rough. Shew.
While I’m taking a pretty decent pay cut by not doing shows, that’s a change I can and will endure without complaint, because so many others have it so much worse. Still, it’s just me doing this by myself; I don’t have anyone else to contribute to the household. I have to be careful so as to never be a burden to my sons. Therefore, I’m tightening all financial belts, and committing to hermit life until such time as the sun comes out again. I don’t mind it, really. As long as I maintain ties with my family and friends, I can fight through all the other changes. And there are many. I’m sure you could make your own list.
If you would have told me last year at this time that these would be a standard accessory to my daily wardrobe, I’d have thought you were nuts. Funny how quickly changes like these are incorporated into daily life. I had some trepidation about masks before the first day of school: What would the students think? Would I have an issue with non-compliance? How would I handle it if I did, especially since it is physically impossible to distance kids at six feet in my room? But for all i and p, the worry about compliance was unnecessary, because my kids (ages 10-18) have been completely cool about it, and no one bucks me on it.
Granted, my reminding them that the over-60 crowd is especially susceptible to illness from this disease so please be kind and don’t make me die may contribute to the cooperation. Slightly.
Some of the changes aren’t so bad. For instance, I’m not sure I will ever return to the grocery, as long as there is curbside pickup (Wally, other stores in my town) and home delivery (Aldi). I really like the service, and I hope it’s here to stay. Another change that I don’t mind is seeing people “mask up” for the benefit of others — even if they don’t agree with the whole mask thing (and there are plenty who don’t, believe me). We need some more empathy and caring in this world, and when the chips are down, you can almost always count on regular folks to rise up — even if it means dealing with some personal discomfort. That warms the cockles of my shriveled, flea-bitten rodentian heart.
The pandemic and all its effects have been talked to death, and I suppose this was just one more log on that fire. But as I sit here in the quiet of a Sunday morning, my thoughts wander to my friends and family, all of whom are just doing their best to get through till the smoke clears (whenever that is). And I think that’s worth a few blog posts. We’re a pretty cool bunch of people, all told. Consider yourself loved and thought about.
To brighter days ahead,