“My stories. Some will make you laugh. Some will make you cry. Some will make you cringe. My stories are a mixture of happiness and deep, dark hauntings.”
This is so beyond overdue, my mind is a swirling mess trying to decipher where to start. I wish as humans we had the ability to pour all of our thoughts out of our head into a well-organized physical mass. But… I guess this is as good as it gets.
Where to start…
I suppose I’ll have to intentionally pick a starting point, as writing down everything, years of content, would take just that – years. So I’ll start with Covid.
Covid. A foreign threat that wouldn’t ever dare to touch us. Simply a headliner on the evening news (like so many others) that didn’t and wouldn’t come close to touching the seemingly immune United States. No way. We believed we were immune as we always are, from most of the world’s hardships. Watching from a distance. Analyzing what everyone else across the globe is doing wrong, how they’re failing. Observing – per usual – the tragedies happening to “them.”
And then it was here. But even when it was here, we were told it was nothing to worry about. Our idiotic president (no I will not capitalize that P) told us everything was good. Good. Everything is great. His most favorite of words. The trickle-down ideologies of that message really stuck. We were fine.
The graphic model of the United States shown on the nightly news. A blank slate of states. Then, one lonesome dot adorning the state of Washington. It was here. Days later there were a few dots here and a few dots there. As we watched in horror, the entirety of the nation glued to every news platform, that graphic model transformed to a polka dot disaster. Weeks later, New York City was a pandemic war zone. Terrified. Stunned. Panicked. It’s everywhere. We watched as that headliner on the evening news shifted from something that was happening to “them” and transformed into something that was happening to “us.”
The decision to close Maryland schools is when it got real for me – I am a teacher. This is when the formerly outlandish threat became reality, my reality. I will never forget sitting in that Friday morning staff meeting. (How many Fridays ago was that? God, I don’t even know now… 10?) We were meeting to discuss schools closing. As of the following Monday, schools would be closed. We talked about many things. Cleaning off our desks, students had to clean off, clean out, and take home everything from their desks, cubbies, etc. We were instructed upon select verbiage to communicate with the kids should questions arise. Everything is always so damn political.
What I will never forget, however, was the silence. The fear. The uncertainty lingering in the cafeteria as we all sat there listening to my Principal (yes, with a capital P). Her stoic voice, for the first time since knowing her, had a twinge of fear. The reality of everything seemingly hit all of us at once. All 150+ of us. I teach with a boisterous staff. The most talented human beings I know. Everyone always has something to say. Not that morning. Silence.
The only other life experience I can appropriately compare, at my near 31 years of age – is the morning of 9/11.
As I left work that day with my little box of necessities to take home – for what I thought would be a “cool” week off – I remember sputtering jokes to coworkers on my way out of the door. Blissfully oblivious to what was to come.
What is today? What day of the week is it? I honestly only know because I labeled the beginning of this with the date. How long have we been socially distanced? Physically distanced? How long have stores been shut down? What is the death toll now? How long have I been teaching online? What a strange time to be alive.
The world has been turned upside down. Masks are mandatory in public. We are under strict orders to stay home. Lockdown. Isolation. Pardon my French but this is fucking nuts. It would seem that as the days pass, the reality of the world would become more “normal” to my brain, more easy to digest, but each day I am consistently shocked by this new reality. This new world.
Covid. The reason the world changed. The reason my world changed. The catalyst to my writings. The catalyst to this blog.
Beginnings. Beginnings of authorship. Beginnings of sharing my stories.
My stories. Some will make you laugh. Some will make you cry. Some will make you cringe. My stories are a mixture of happiness and deep, dark hauntings.
The many colorful stories that paint my life, that paint my inner being. Our stories are what make us, shape us, mold us, sculpt us.
My stories are many colors.