Where do I begin? Somehow, it has been 21 days or so since I last wrote here. I don’t know how that is possible. This month has been like following an uneven path toward destinations both planned and still unseen.
I sit here in my new home office. It’s a place that I can’t get enough of, honestly. It’s cliche to say I have a room of my own, I know. (Would Virginia Woolf be glad about that?) But having this space feels as figuratively significant as it is necessary for synchronous online teaching.
The summer is ending and in some ways is over. And I keep reading and hearing about people’s experiences of not having a summer, of being robbed of one. I know that resonates with me, to some degree. As I write that, however, my mind flashes to sunshine and hiking trails. To my son wading in the creek. To too many baked brownies. To evenings on the deck. Admittedly, though, no sooner had we purchased water shoes and a fishing net than we were planning for the school year — carefully organizing our living space to provide adequate privacy for all.
Overall, this summer was like canning fruit for winter. And the tops to the jars are still not on; the labels yet to be printed. My son’s room still has books on the floor that need shelving. Old furniture sits in the hallway in need of storing. It’s funny how in order to create order, we need to endure a season of chaos and upheaval.
But this summer has been more productive for my family than most. So, it’s been a great season of change and reflection for us. I am not mentioning the difficult stuff here, but there has been plenty of stress, tears, and heartache as well. We are human after all. If we had gotten through what is hopefully the first and last pandemic summer unscathed, then I think I would worry about our sanity even more.
Although the beginning to the school year has brought on sadness (we are still “here”, wading through the muck as a society), this lavender room that I am typing in reminds me how simple it is to find stillness and beauty.
It’s beginning to rain now as remnants from Hurricane Laura push through the land. Rainy days still evoke that feeling of being held in a cocoon. Suddenly, being enclosed together feels like safety, like love, like nostalgia for those living under our own roofs.