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How My Daughter Prepared Me for a Pandemic

Life changed within a week. For so many, everything was changed, altered or destroyed; plans, expectations, jobs……

March came in like a lion and left like a pack of demon mutant Zombies that multiplied into April, camped out through May and are trying to nestle into June.

It is hard to watch everything crumble before your eyes. It is devastating and demands all the feels.

Hubs and I have nestled in on the 20. It’s just us and the 14,562 rabbits that have decided to call this place home. We have battend down the hatches, are riding out the storm and counting all the ways we are incredibly fortunate.

But this is not our first rodeo- it is not our first life pivot. It’s not the first time we have watched life go straight to hell before our eyes. The last hunkering reduced us to one paycheck, medical bills, a complex medical child and a hoarding of purel (yeah, we started that, sorry).

Ironically this was around 2008, our last big economic down turn. I have no recollection of that recession. Seriously, people compare the Market today to 2008 and I have no context. I was knee-deep in tube feedings and seizures.

But Samantha taught us well. She created our playbook for this time. And the lessons we learned over ten years ago still apply today.

Respect the germs. Oh, we were so respectful. People talk now about being ‘scared’. We didn’t live our life scared but it was the fact that those germy germs were everywhere, and could knock down a medically fragile kiddo in a day. I wasn’t scared. I just enjoyed things like sleep, a night without seizures, not having to deep suction my child because she couldn’t cough the nasty up. We could whip out an alcohol wipe like we were in a gunfight.

Social Distancing. We became masters at the Social Distance. We chose the booth in the way back when eating out. We moved away from people if they got too close. And we cancelled many, many events. The tough part was that no one else was social distancing. I cried many an alligator tear for events that we could not attend, friends we missed, parties we had to turn down. I feared our friends would leave us as we watched a life go by.

Be mindful of your fear; the Primative Brain is a bastard. There were moments in those four years that I was not proud of. Fear, anxiety and grief got the best of me. I screamed at doctors. I stormed out of rooms. I once lobbed a chair at Hubs. I wanted control, I needed control, I couldn’t rage at something I couldn’t put my hands around so I raged at people.

But here is what I also remember; that time was so short. We had four years with our girl and for every week we were in the hospital and I begrudged our life, those four years were fleeting. Four years taught us that our body is fragile, touch is precious, a scent triggers a memory stronger than sight and you only get one precious body.

Four years taught us no matter how sad you are in this moment, this moment will change; you might be happier, you might be even more sad but this moment is fleeting; do not invest too much time where you are at this second. Stop. Breathe. Access.

Four years taught me all the reasons to be better. Fortunately, I have the rest of my life to try and be so.

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