Friday, February 5, 2021

Small Joys for Week 5

For the first time since Covid reared its ugly head and forced us to be mindful of each and every interaction, I am feeling intense loneliness. TheHub has been leaving the house at 6 each morning and is not getting home until nearly 7 in the evening. When he gets home he is zapped and only wants to eat, then fall asleep on the couch watching something on TV. This happens every year at this time, but for the first time I can't do what I would do normally. 

I can no longer go to Mom's and have a cup of coffee with her, or go out to lunch with friends. My Wednesday class was cancelled even though we did meet briefly before Thanksgiving in a huge space with everyone wearing masks ( pre-Covid numbers rise ). Even though we only met a few weeks, there was some conversation and seeing real people. 
I would also go to an afternoon movie with my film buff friend. I suppose technically we could still go since theaters here are open, but neither of us want to go out and about until we have had our second dose of the vaccine and the infection rates go way down. Will I ever go to a movie, play or sports event unmasked again after this? I am not sure.

Anyway I have got a huge case of the feel sorry for me blues this week and the joys reflect it. I know I have to snap out of it, and I realize how much I have to be grateful for, but, at this moment I am kind of wallowing in self pity. I will be better this coming week.

Friday: I got a message from the husband of one of my long time friends. T. is retiring and because of the Covid restrictions in life right now, there could be no retirement party. Instead he asked her friends to post a video wishing her well going forth with her new life.
Hmmmm! Covid, living in sweat pants, no hair cuts, no makeup, excessive cooking (and eating)? There was no way  I was going to commit this face to a video that might be kept for ever.  On the flip side I wanted to be part of it, because I was seriously happy for her and honored to be included. 
After some careful consideration I decided I would send my greetings and best wishes using a___ sock puppet, so I spent a bit of time  making my puppet.
Later in the day my beloved sister came over with her sock puppet (cause people love to copy a great idea) and we filmed our greetings, but mainly laughed at each other. It took many takes to get one video each where we were either not laughing or the camera was not shaking while the videographer (mostly me) was trying to contain their laughter but their body was not cooperating.

Saturday: We woke, had breakfast, then had to go take care of a few things at the lake place. It was just gorgeous down there. A few hours later we left  for home and decided to pick up a couple of chicken dinners for a late lunch. Then we settled in to watch a couple of episodes of The Crown. I think I am very happy that I am not a Royal. Walking through my house with a handbag on my arm would be a deal breaker for me.

Sunday: We watched our church services online followed by a Webex Sunday school meeting. I do enjoy seeing and talking to our friends. I miss the "in person" aspect but I will settle for this for now. Any social contact is better than none at all. And the upside? No one knows I still have on my pajama pants since I only have to be "ready" from the waist up. You can always tell who is not "done" (always at least one female), because they sit off camera and you just hear their voice/s.
Later in the evening we watched more of The Crown, followed by part of The Godfather. We have seen it so many times that we watch it until the best line of the entire movie happens, when we say in unison "Leave the gun and take the cannolis". After that line neither of us feel compelled to watch the last half.

Monday: I had a few phone conversations with Son3 about the snowfall in NYC. Like any born and bred southern type person, snow is magical to me and if I can't see it, I can at least hear about it. I must confess, though, that in my entire life, we have never had to shovel snow, because if the snow is deep enough for the roads to be covered, the entire city shuts down, you stay home, and drink hot chocolate while marveling at the beauty of the white stuff. Then, at most, 3 days later the roads are clear and the snow is gone.

Tuesday: I had to be at the lake place mid-morning to meet a wood inspection specialist. The down side of a lake place is the abundance of creepy crawlies and a normal termite bond is not enough home protection. While I was there I did a few other necessary things then sat and had a cup of coffee while watching the water fowl. Some of those birds are magnificent. 
I had another appointment later in the day there and then left to drive home. When I bought a new car a while back it came with a 3 month Sirius trial. I seriously doubt I will keep it, but I was able to drive and listen to show tunes on the Broadway station. What fun!

Wednesday: I had another stay at home day. When we were growing up Mom always told us that she had to have all the laundry done before midnight on New Year's Eve or she would never get caught up with her laundry for the entire coming year. Every year of my adult life, I have followed her example. This year I had DIL3 and Son3 here and threw caution to the wind. NYE came and went with a laundry hamper filled with dirty clothes. 
I'll be damned if Mom was not right!  I am no where near being caught up with all the laundry. Of course, they bring two cats, and even though they are sequestered in two bedrooms with a bath  between them so they can wander freely, Lola and Emma do not understand that cats are not supposed to be on the beds. 
When they leave I have to launder both beds from the mattress pads up.  That does not take into account the throws and pillows. It seems like every day I am washing something from those rooms, in addition to our own laundry. Maybe I will catch up by NYE 2021. I guess the joy for the day was getting a comforter laundered. Oh and I forgot the basketball game. We watched Alabama vs. LSU. It was a fun game to watch.

Thursday: This was a non-eventful day and I was feeling sorry for myself. I have little to no contact with the outside world, and the isolation is really beginning to bother me. We also have not put Mom's house on the market and need to get that done as quickly as possible. So that is weighing heavily on my mind. 
Additionally I am having to clear my house of items to make room for Mom's things which are piled in my basement. Right now it seems like a never ending cycle of rehoming, donating, and moving stuff from one place to another. On the upside, if I ever have a formal dinner party for forty I have it covered with china and crystal.
My joys for the day were small. I did get to watch a group of migrating birds in my back yard (I suspect there were about 200 of them at one time and was very thankful my name is not Tippi Hedren).  I had a very brief phone call from Pip, which always makes me smile. I am also filled gratitude for having all I need (plus much I don't need/want) and no snow to shovel (though the yard could stand a little rake action)!

So go out, or stay home like me, and look for daily joy. It is out there, but some days (and weeks) even though it hides well, it is still around!


  1. I love your Godfather nod and Birds movie nod! I too mentioned how the not seeing people is really starting to sink in. The quick ins and outs in stores do not count as I am a bit tense when doing so. My daughter is my saving grace, though I'm sure she would rather have more friend contact than mom. <u husband is the same-hoe after 7, but I'm the one up and working and then he leaves.

  2. Hugs.
    Some days depression is a rational reaction. And yes, there are still joys and they keep us sane(ish).
    Snorting with laughter at the concept of a cat free zone. There is cat fur everywhere here despite my efforts. Including under the toilet seat. WTF? How? Why? When?

  3. (((HUGS))) Anne. I'm sorry you felt so lonely, but, you still managed to find the moments of joy! I love the idea of the sock puppets and your sister joining you with her sock puppet! It sounds a lot like something my daughter and I might do! Sometimes, my daughter and her friends do a virtual movie watching party - each in his/her home, watching the same movie on their computers and "chatting" with each other through texting - it is their alternative to going to the movie theater together. Maybe it is something your movie buff friend and you can do?

  4. Maybe with your son and DIL just going back you've finally run out of steam after what was an eventful year - and that's ok. Actually, I know you're feeling isolated and a bit down (don't we all get like that) but your week sounds rather lovely to me!

  5. Oh, the sock puppet video with your sister sounds like so much fun. I hope it lifted your spirits some, Anne. We have the same thing here with the snow. Everything shuts down and it is usually meted here by dinner time. LOL

    Speaking of laundry I am working un mine today. I hope you can get caught up on yours.

  6. I have never had to shovel snow, either. That is one of the perks of living in the South. I was snowed in for a week in 1993. I did get out and walk to neighbor's house. She was in her 90s, so she really needed company and help. I read that is takes six months to get rid of cat dander with often cleanings.

  7. I definitely am never caught up on laundry - we all try to work out every day, plus regular clothes. Even not washing my (non-workout) clothes each day, there are four of us, and just a ton always.

    I'm feeling that loneliness as well, and met up with a friend for a masked, socially distanced hike this morning. Weather was gorgeous & it was just what I needed. I hope you're able to find something like that for yourself!

  8. An idea for helping combat loneliness....I have started monthly short (1/2 hour) calls with prior co-workers (I retired and now don’t see them but miss seeing them), as well two girlfriends from high school (see every ten years at reunions) and an in law that I like....anyway, see who you might enjoy chatting with and set up a call. Worse case you don’t do it again. But I share enjoy looking at my calendar each month and knowing I will have some contact with friends.

    1. By the way, these are not zoom or Facebook calls, just old fashion phone calls ;).

  9. I am thankful my husband is home all the time (except errands) for work, it does help keep the lonelies away. Today we went for another walk and I got to talk to a neighbor (at a distance) on the way back for 20 minutes - it was so nice! Love your lists, there is truly something good in every day just like you say

  10. The isolation is really getting to me also. I want to go out and see people. I want to have people over for dinner, that are my age. I do try to stay busy, but I get very lonely at times.

  11. You've had a tougher year than many of us, Anne. Maybe plan a trip to visit Pip this summer= oh yeah, the adults too LOL. I'm looking forward to seeing my 2 youngest grandkids this summer. They have booked a Disney cruise for October but are now thinking they might reschedule. I was invited to go with them but declined but I might be up to it at another time. I get my second Covid vaccine the 15th so am definitely looking forward to that and being able to go out a bit. I haven't left my house except to get the first Covid shot since Christmas eve. I still have plenty of food too! My sanity is lots of phone calls from my clients who now are all wanting to know when their next stimulus check will arrive LOL. I keep telling them it is not a done deal yet.

  12. I'm glad you still found joys and am so sorry you are feeling so lonely. I hope you are able to get your mom's place on the market soon.

    Speaking of your mom's stuff in the basement, I'm still dealing with some of my mom's stuff and she's been gone for a long time already. My mom left behind eight sets of beautiful china each with a service for 12, and so much crystal just for starters. The bad part, nobody wants that kind of stuff these days. We had an estate sale, we donated truck loads of stuff, we sent things off to auction, we donated more stuff, We gave stuff away, and I still have more!

    Doing the sock puppets sounds like fun and I hope it raised your spirits even if just for a bit. Can you and your sister get together more often to help fight of the blues? Big hugs!

  13. I'm sorry you're feeling the loneliness. I'm finding that being an introvert is a bit of a benefit these days. Good luck with the listing of your mom's house.

    Despite the bugs your lake place sounds lovely. To be able to watch the water and the birds where I live is a dream of mine.

    Take care, stay well!


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