April 6, 2021

Before COVID, I think I didn’t so much “act” as I “reacted”. 

There was so much going on, and I ran from event to event.  I was always thinking ahead to the next thing on the calendar, making sure that I had things lined up and ready. 

Sometimes, it seemed kind of like a big check-list with an impossibly long list of things to do. 

Lockdowns, quarantines, cancellations, social distancing, rules (upon rules upon rules)… all that has changed me.

Today, I offered to help the girls’ lacrosse team get started at their first practice, just because I feel badly for the short-staffed coach.  In the end, it turned out that there was really only one task I could help with. 

This left me with time to fill.  The pre-COVID Jill would have used it to move forward some project.  But I was not prepared today.  Instead, I called my husband, and we decided to go through the grocery store—together.  (It’s become our COVID form of a couple’s outing—not that we ever really went out that much anyway.)

We were very efficient together, and when we finished, I still had one full hour before my daughter was ready to go back home.  I could drive home and be in my house for fifteen minutes, but that seemed silly. Again, before a year of slowing down, I would have had my computer with me, and I would have planned for the possibility of being stuck with downtime.

OK, I am kidding myself:  before this, I would never have offered to help with the girls’ lacrosse team for something open-ended.  It would have had a fixed start—and end—time.

But not now.  Now, when presented with an hour of time, my mind responds differently.  Today my mind went to “silly” things—like sitting in the sunshine in a park.  Or getting a drink to slowly sip while soaking in the sun. Or seeing if a friend who lives nearby were home, and taking the chance she might have a few minutes to chat. 

In the end, I was excited about talking with the friend, and I drove over to her house to see if she were there.  If she weren’t, oh well; I could still get the drink and sit in the sun. 

When I arrived at their house, I was in luck.  She was home and done with work for the day. 

This unexpected time ended up being a bonus for everyone.  Four dogs enjoyed an unexpected romp in the family’s fenced-in backyard.  I caught up with my friend.  And, I got to hear all about her son’s plans for after college graduation, which happens in just a few weeks. 

I am hard pressed to remember a time I’ve had a “spare hour” in April in the past, oh, probably eight years. 

But today I did, thanks to the odd schedules that COVID gives us… and it turned out to be my silver lining.  

Silver Linings…

started as my personal response to 2020’s global pandemic of COVID-19.  When I published them locally,  I was surprised by how much people responded to them.


I hope they bring some positivity to you, too, during this unsettling time

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