It Took A Pandemic To Make It Happen

Lessons From A River

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Last week my family of 4 snuck away with my sister’s family of 6. We decided to continue our pandemic social distancing but do it from a different place. We piled into two cars and made the trip to a beauitful house in the mountains. All 10 of us in a house together, on vacation, for the first time ever.

It took a pandemic to make it happen.

No travel sports for the children has opened up our schedules. Pre-pandemic, we had to struggle to find a few hours each month where all of us were free. But now, we get to spend one full weekend day together each week and easily found a way to get away for a vacation.

It took a pandemic to make it happen.

As the 10 of us floated down a river in our teethered together inflatable tubes for a full 7 hours, we laughed, we talked, we swam, we stood up and dragged our tubes when the water got too low or the current got too slow, we wondered if the little rapids would kill us when the water was higher and moved more quickly, we relaxed when the current and depth was just right, and we pointed out how lucky we were to be able to have this time together. We made incredible memories with each other.

It took a pandemic to make it happen.

Later that week, as we sat around the dining room table playing game after game after game and belly laughing until it hurt, I breathed it all in and hoped that the future would be kind to this family. I hoped that these days we have been given together would keep the 6 cousins tethered together — just like those tubes on the river — long after the grown ups are gone.

It took a pandemic to make it happen.

While I wish we could go back in time and avoid so much that this year has brought to us, I am also grateful for the forced slow down these difficult times have provided us. Life seems to have more sweet spots now as I decide more deliberately how and with whom I spend my time.

It took a pandemic to make it happen.

Although things often feel wildly out of control in the midst of the current events, my life feels wholly more mine than it did before. Life used to feel like those areas of the river where the water was high and the current was fast — things often felt out of my control and like they were moving too quickly. Other days used to feel like those parts of the river where the currents meet and we had to work hard to get our tubes back on track.

But now, despite all of the stress and uncertainty in life, my life feels like those sweet spots in the river. There is peace, happiness, laughter, and love. Things somehow feel just right.

It took a pandemic to make it happen.

www.changingperspectivesonline.com 🖊 Author🎙Podcaster ❤️ Therapist 📖 Professor | Passionate about topics like grief, parenting, relationships & wellness.

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