I like to consider myself an optimist. I believe that things happen for a reason and that everything is a learning opportunity (which is probably why I’m a teacher). That being said, I certainly have my moments where I throw up my hands in anger and frustration and have to ask “why?” Being in the entertainment industry, I like to do that as dramatically as possible, with clenched fists shaking in the air and perhaps melting to my knees.
So when “2020” started to happen in March (and “2020” is in quotes because it is a WHOLE mood), naturally, I stepped back and counted my blessings for the planned two weeks of quarantine. (Remember when we thought this would all be over in two weeks? That was cute!).
My family was healthy, we had a newborn baby to snuggle and bond with, we could finally catch up on our Netflix queue, and we would watch Covid-19 pass through like a Macy’s Thanksgiving Day balloon and go about our lives healthy and ripped from all of the at-home workouts we would totally do.
Well. Obviously, that’s not what’s happened. July is coming to an end, and the state has not yet fully reopened. My sweet little quarantine roots have become like a helmet of brown hair atop blonde locks down to my waist. I have not lost any pregnancy weight because my husband has decided to use this time to become a gourmet chef. We debate on what the school year is going to look like and brace ourselves to potentially become first-grade teachers to our almost-six-year-old if schools go virtual.
I sit here and think of all of the things that can go wrong. Our family could get sick. We could lose a loved one (and we almost did). Our unemployment could run out (and our theatre industry isn’t coming back until 2021).
The only thing that keeps me sane is to breathe (and I am grateful to be able to do that) and to remember the things that I am thankful for in these times of social unrest, pandemic, and murder hornets.
I am grateful that we live in Connecticut and that most people around me are taking this seriously, wearing masks, and doing their part to keep our case numbers low.
I am supremely grateful for my health and the health of my family and do not take it for granted.
I am grateful that we are slowly starting to open our social circle again, and for our outdoor “play dates” with our friends. I take time to be especially grateful for these events now, knowing full well that we could need to retreat back to stay-at-home orders at any moment.
I am grateful that my son is young enough to be able to adapt to this current way of life.
I am grateful that my husband is such a good cook that I can’t lose my pregnancy weight.
I am grateful for Costco wine.
I am grateful for dogs, who make everything better, even when not in the dumpster fire of 2020.
I am grateful for the obscene amount of prime online content to keep me entertained.
I am grateful for Bravo filming their reunions via Zoom because it’s honestly more entertaining than their regularly scheduled content.
I am grateful for people’s boundless creativity online.
I am grateful for the nationwide conversations being had about race and how to achieve equality for all.
I am grateful for unemployment until my company is allowed to reopen.
I am grateful for essential workers. All of them.
I am grateful to be alive.
I know that any of these things for which I am grateful could be taken away in a heartbeat. That makes me all the more grateful.