“Can you hear me?”
“What about now?”
“Carol, I think you’re on mute.”
“Do you have your mic plugged in?”
“I can see everyone but I can’t hear anyone!”
“What’s the dial-in number, does anyone know?”
“Oh dear, hang on- my kid just opened the front door!”
And that’s how the last 12 months have been like for most of us. PURE. JOY. I don’t know about you, but I am tired of telling Carol she’s still on mute hearing and seeing that word (COVID) everywhere. We need to rename it to DIVOC or something because it’s driving me mad.
So, it’s been a minute year, eh?
I wanted to write something in anticipation of the one-year anniversary of when covid became widespread in North America, but I have been working on this damn post for what seems like an eternity (much like how the last 12 months felt)! I wrote and rewrote this post over and over again trying to form the proper words to convey how much of a struggle it has been (not only for me, but for all); the words don’t seem to want to flow. Then I realized I already kind of wrote this post half a year ago. Frankly, every blog (it seems) and media outlet I’m seeing this week has been inundated with the same articles: covid is one year old! I get it; we all get it. It’s been a flippin’ year!
This time last year, I was preparing for my daughter’s March break from daycare (in Canada we always break from school for one week in mid-March). The promise of spring was in the air: longer days, warmer weather, and renewed hope that 2020 was going to be the best year yet.
In reality, though, it was the start of the longest year of our lives. Rumours swirled about a potential “lockdown”, but no one knew what that really meant, what it would be like, how it would work, and whether or not it was even feasible. We literally had nothing to compare this seismic event to; we had no way of foreseeing how things were going to pan out. In early 2020, no one had any insight as to how a society could possibly function productively within the confines of one’s own living room. Weather forecasters, CEOs, news anchors, Prime Ministers, teachers, and the like were working from home; they were making do by converting their home-sanctuaries into work-epicenters. It was chaotic at best! Suddenly we had new empathy and were all too familiar with what Professor Robert Kelly must have been going through in 2017 in this now-viral video.
In March of last year, it was eluded that we might have to live under a state of lockdown for a month and that quite literally blew my mind then (ha!), much less the rumoured one year we ended up with (and for some, still living through)! For as modern and westernized as our society is, it was unfathomable that this could be the solution and the best solution at that. Somehow we are able to propel man through the atmosphere to the life-giving planet of the moon* yet we weren’t able to create a world where we could safely protect our civilization without hunkering down in our homes like groundhogs for an undetermined period of time? How could this be real? How long would this be? Where was science? Where was all the technology? We were back to basics it seemed, and we completely buckled under the pressure.
Here’s what else was a shock to the system: everyone totally underestimated the value of toilet paper. TOILET PAPER! I learned that when our humanity is at risk of imploding, the first thought on most people’s mind will be, “MUST BUY TOILET PAPER!” I wanted to scream at all the loo roll hoarders of the world with my fist in the air, “God damnit, I want to live in a society where everyone, who wants it, is eligible for a square of toilet paper!”
So, are we freakin’ there yet? No we are not, but hopefully we are much closer than we all think.
*Yes, I know the moon is not a planet. Thank you!