By the time you read this, things may be different, better and brighter.
There is an imminent deadline for the 2020 summer edition of On the Minds of Moms. The tricky part is it’s April. I’m sitting at my desk, in my home office, in the middle of a global pandemic. I have loads to say, little motivation to write it, and am scattered-brained on how to streamline my thoughts into something meaningful for our readers.
Do I pen something light and funny? Should I crack open my heart and let the love and sadness and support seep out onto my computer screen and into your hearts? This virus has robbed all of us in one way or a hundred. I want to acknowledge, validate, and grieve our losses together.
And, yet, this column will not go to print until May. What lies between now and then?
Our daily news briefings these past couple of months lay out grim facts and straightforward, kindergarten-like instructions: wash your hands, say your prayers, be kind and helpful, stay in your bubble — a 6-foot-wide bubble. OK, so I added “say your prayers.”
The theme for this issue is “Simple savory summer”. Let that sink in … a simple and savory summer. Let’s hope. None of the scientists, epidemiologists, researchers or experts are predicting next week, let alone May or June. So, let’s reflect on this day: Sunday, April 5, 2020, Palm Sunday.
Palm Sunday marks the beginning of Holy Week for Christians and Passover for my Jewish friends. Many, including my own children, are bummed because Easter — the commercialized aspect and the family gatherings and traditions — is overshadowed this year.
It is different, for sure. It is also an opportunity to dig deeper. This crisis heightens the significance and the absolute essence of the journey to the Resurrection. Hold on to one another. Have faith. All will be well.
The Easter season of 2020 was a stark reminder of the crossing from gloom, despair and isolation to hope, light and victory. The journey requires pain and suffering.
We know that we are amid the darkness of the coronavirus pandemic. We know that there are blessings in hard times. We know the blessings are abundant, even in the gloom. There are heroes revealing bravery and selflessness, unity and perseverance. Everyday people, medical professionals, janitors — who are now considered essential personnel — educators, big money businesses (sports, travel and automobile industries, to name a few), professional athletes, families, neighbors, volunteers and strangers are stepping up to help.
We have never been more alike than we are now. None of us are immune to the devastation and destruction of this virus, personally, professionally, financially or otherwise. We are in this together.
The ingenuity and creativity to serve and connect with one another is astounding and heartwarming. United we stand, albeit six feet apart.
Look ahead to a simple savory summer. We crave simplicity and I would imagine we will savor our summer, even if there are restrictions.
My 50th birthday is on June 25. To be honest, I have been a bit ambivalent about it. Prior to this crisis, I was anxious and unhappy about entering another decade.
My thirties were childbearing and health recovery years. Those years were exciting and fast-paced. I gave birth to three of our most precious gifts, Quinn, Patrick and Harper, and I survived and recovered from three brain aneurysm surgeries. Nice work, good and faithful servant.
Turning 40 was my redemption from health scares. I was given a second chance at life, and, boy, was I thrilled to see 40. My forties were blurry. And, since everything else is being canceled, I could surely call off my 50th birthday and reschedule it for next year.
But, I won’t. I can’t. We need to get through the Holy Week, the darkness and fear, to grow and learn. I need to close the chapter of my forties, savor the taste and bask in the simplicity of 50. I am looking forward to a summer of reflection and gratitude. Join me, virtually, as we follow the light of a restored hope.
For now, we must continue to hunker down, follow the rules of quarantine, find joy in the simplicity of our quiet days, pull our resources and strengths, and live like a kindergartener by washing our hands and staying within our (6-foot) bubble.
Take a moment this summer to reflect on Holy Week 2020. Remember how the darkness, the fear, the anguish, the infection, isolation, and suffering beautifully transformed into unity and healing, recovery and hope, and a revitalized life.
Live simply this summer. Savor the deliciousness of summertime smells and flavors. Wrap yourselves in the warmth and comfort of the sunshine. Good times are ahead!
See this story and more in the summer On the Minds of Moms magazine on stands this week in area grocery stores in Fargo-Moorhead, West Fargo and Grand Forks.
Kathleen Wrigley is a wife, mom and advocate. She is made with equal amounts of grace and grit, with gobs of giggles and gratitude.