What I Will Miss About Remote Life, Yes, Really
The end of the school year is here. And like all endings, it is a time for reflection. If you had told me sixteen months ago that the world would be in lockdown due to a dangerous virus crippling cities and countries, throwing us into virtual remote life, I, like many, would have thought you were describing a zombie or horror movie.
Alas, we all know this has been real life. The pandemic has been scary, and none of us had a handbook or even Cliff Notes when it all began. So we went through each day without a compass. Most of the time, we were winging it — sometimes with success while other days not so much. And next year, here in New York, kids will be back at school full time.
But how will everyday life be after this historic time? I’ve changed. I admit I have always have been on the go and hurried, and the last thing I needed was to become a remote teacher, short-order cook, school nurse, and so on. But it happen, and it was rough. Yet as time passed, I found myself embracing the moments. Of course, the indignities that can surface during a rough patch of life, well, they piled up. And life got sticky and challenging AF. What I do know now, as more calm streams into the day, not just to tease but to stay longer than the day before, is that I am lucky. Crazy as remote life with kids 24/7 has been, and I do not wish to experience something like this again — I appreciate the opportunity to be with my family. And now know that hunkering down and focusing on living can be done. It won’t be perfect nor ideal, but it will be okay.
It took a while after mentally losing it a few times, but I eventually arrived at a place of gratitude. And the pandemic is not over. COVID is still an issue and may remain one for years to come, but in the spirit of being grateful for what I do have and not what could’ve been, here is what I will miss: spontaneous hugs while on a Zoom, random sloppy kisses, also while on a Zoom, being slapped by a young child while I worked (it is funny now), realizing I still suck at math, that history class is still my jam, finding my boys cuddling on their lunch break, an empty park where the squirrels and birds are the only company, a traffic-free BQE, picking my youngest son up at the bus drop-off, an empty (and clean!) subway, sharing meals with my neighbors.
And so much more. While life, as we knew it, pre-COVID will sneak back in, and there will be plenty I won’t miss from this time, the good stuff will be imprinted forever.