Sticker on the grocery store floor reminding shoppers to maintain physical distancing, photo credit Iris Gonzalez

Don’t Stand So Close to Me

Week 4 of Stay at Home in San Antonio, Texas

Tomorrow is Sunday, which means we will celebrate an Easter of hope as we stay at home.

It’s been four weeks, with countless more to go. Our country is a large one, and every state is responding differently.

But no state is untouched.

San Antonio has been on the national news for the line of 10,000 cars waiting in line for free food at our Food Bank this past Thursday.

And I just read tonight that $500,000 has been raised in the past 48 hours for the SA Food Bank. People are good and they are helping.

This past week, I’m having bad dreams, about aliens, bad guys, you name it.

Last night I dreamt I was separated from my group of friends and family. When I finally reached where I was supposed to meet them, I couldn’t find anyone.

A dear friend called me tonight from the Bay Area, she is my social friend, the life of every party when we have our adventures.

“What are you doing for Easter?” she asked.

“The same thing I’ll be doing for Mothers’ Day, Memorial Day, Father’s Day, and the 4th of July. I’m home.”

We’re careful, we’re safe, we’re together, we’re lucky.

I check in with my young son and he is still doing well, happy to have time to hang with his friends online. I hear him laughing and tonight, he was even singing.

We don’t wring our hands in front of him, but we don’t hide it either.

He saw I was watching Saturday Night Live tonight, their first remotely done episode.

“Wait, it looks like he’s at home, why is that?” he asked.

“It’s because of the quarantine, honey, everyone is staying at home, so that means shows need to taped from home, too.”

It didn’t occur to him that our “adventure” was a universal one. Of course, once I explained it, he nodded and returned to his friends.

I’ve discovered that explaining the pandemic to kids is much like talking about sex. Answer all questions factually, but don’t overdo it. I know he’ll process this in his way at his pace.

The new normal is wearing a mask while keeping your distance when you must go to the grocery store. The people who stand out now are the ones acting like nothing is going on. No mask, playing with their cellphones, walking much too close to me.

Not everyone is worried about the COVID-19 pandemic. Whether from innocence or disbelief, only time will show how each of us processes what is and will be happening.

I know the science. I am left with faith to sustain me as I walk the path set for me as best I can.

May you walk along your path maintaining social distance but knowing you are never alone.

Featured image is of a sticker on the floor of a grocery store reminding shoppers to maintain physical distancing, photo credit: Iris Gonzalez.

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