Celebrating May long with the new normal
By Treena Mielke
The rain pounded down, and the wind whipped the lake to a frenzy of waves, frothing and angry.
Inside the house we all sat, as angry ourselves, as the wind and the lake. We were mad at the weather, which, of course, we had zero control over, but we were mad anyway.
This would be a May long weekend that happened many years ago.
Back then, back in the day as they say, our biggest frustration was because it was raining and stormy on a weekend that traditionally was meant for hanging out with friends, camping, or playing ball or water skiing or simply just enjoying being ‘normal’.
It was what we did. It was what we expected.
It was our ‘normal.’
Fast forward to the May long, 2020.
Celebrating the May long during COVID-19.
How does that work? How does one celebrate May long during COVID-19?
Very carefully, it seems.
But, really, I would say, we celebrate it mostly with gratitude.
Gratitude, because, at long last, we can actually see the people in real life that for the last several weeks have only been an image on our Zoom meetings or U-tube or whatever.
When I think back to those years when we were all moaning and groaning and carrying on like spoiled children because the weather would not play nice with us, I feel a little ashamed.
Just think, I had all those people in my house at the same time and I did not have to worry about keeping six feet away from them.
Why didn’t I just go around hugging everyone?
Just because I could!
Why wasn’t I just grateful because we could had the luxury of simply enjoy ‘normal.’
It is true that the pandemic is far from over. It is true that more cases are reported every day and people are still dying.
It is true that wearing a mask in many situations, even going into a bank, is okay, well, better than okay. It is a wise safety precaution.
But it is also true that here, in Alberta, there are signs of life.
Restrictions are starting to ease up.
It is like a light at the end of the tunnel, a dim light, but a light, nonetheless.
I had a few people over the other day, sitting on my deck, to celebrate our wedding anniversary.
Of course, we practiced social distancing as best we could. Of course, we did not hug each other.
Of course, we all took part in the ‘new normal.’
But, still, the sun was kind, reaching out to wrap its gentle warm rays around each of us. And the air smelled green, and spring, fresh, new and full of promise welcomed us back quietly, with its soft, unspoken touch.
And it seemed our laughter and our conversation touched the space between each of us with good vibrations reminding us all about what was good and right with the world.
And, for this brief moment in time, it seemed the old normal and the new normal kind of meshed together.
And it was good!
And, this time, I remembered what was most important.
I remembered to be grateful.
And I was. Incredibly grateful!