There's no doubt to anyone, that life right now is difficult. Up here in the north, the great white oilfield, we are dealing with a recession, the possibility of facing another great depression, and of course the fear and anxiety that comes with a worldwide pandemic. It's a really big scary world right now.
I've been staying home as much as I can, trying to enjoy this period of uncertainty by making it more like a vacation and a time to break from the world. But it's hard. I miss seeing people, of being able to talk to a cashier without fear I'm too close, or talking too "moistly". I'm scared for my children, and husband, parents and relatives, my friends and my clients. I just want to wrap everyone up in a giant Lysol wipe and hold them close.
Right now my children are enjoying having both mom and dad home for such a long stretch of time. They only see their dad in stretches like this for vacation or Christmas. To them, this must be such a treat to have access to both of us 24/7. To not fear monsters in the closet because the ultimate protector (dad) is home. (Yeah, I'm still a little salty that I am apparently not strong enough to defeat the monsters. Only dad is). There's this giant kid (in the shape of dad) here to play video games, and card games, and build tunnels and caves in the snow.
So for them it must be all fun and games right? Maybe for my son, who's not at the stage to notice all the changes.
But I see the observations and deductions going through my daughters eyes. She cries to me about all the friends she misses, from her teachers and friends at pre-k and dance, to seeing mommy's friends and their kids, or just her favorite tellers at the stores. She misses people that are not us. So even though her life is pretty fun, she's still taking in the more somber moments of this time. And I know all of these will make up her memories of a moment that reshaped the world. These moments are stories she might tell her children or grand children. Blurry memories of a time where we all just stopped.
So with all that said, I told her I wanted to take some photos. I showed her some images that inspired me. Then I told her to tell me when she was ready.
In the middle of me deep cleaning my closet, she came to me in a dress that is still a few sizes too large, and told me she wanted to do photos. So we went downstairs to the studio, set it up.
These are the moments that came about. There were lots of silly faces and smiles in between, so don't worry she still had fun- but these were the images my heart needed to create. I feel so many of these everyday:
Loss of Control Anger Despair Loneliness
And yes, though i feel all of these everyday, there is one I push to feel most.
One I try to remember when the rest get me feeling to down. And that is Hope.
Hope that we are doing all that we can, that our neighbors are too.
Hope that my kids will remember these moments with positivity and happiness.
Hope that we will recover and that when we come out of this, that our priorities have shifted for the better.
That we value our relationships more than what we can go out and buy, and that we might even miss the endless days of just being together.