The Year 2020 – or, the Year that Pooped in the Pool

No Poo Pool Please

For those who know me, you know I’ve got an honorary PH.D in Positivity. No matter what happens, even if initially I’m devastated or bummed or just ticked off, eventually I come around to the belief that I’m better off because of it. Maybe not richer, or younger, or cooler, but deeper, more compassionate.

And then the year 2020 fell on all of us like a kid who pooped in the public swimming pool. We’re all there trying to learn how to swim and have fun and now we all have to get out of the water and walk home wondering if we have poo particles in our hair. How far do the particles go when they’re in water?

So I’m here stuck at home again in Texas because we’ve got over almost 6,000 active cases of confirmed COVID19 in my county alone with 65 confirmed deaths and a whopping 138 new cases just yesterday.

It all came into perspective yesterday when my three year old wailed that he hadn’t been to the ball pit at IGI Playground in TWO DAYS! I was like…sweetie it’s been 5 months. It has been five months since my kids have seen the inside of an indoor play park, the mall, an outdoor concert, Target, or a StarBucks. We take them to the outdoor parks when it’s open, and we escaped to Rockport (6 active cases) beach a few weeks ago.

And you know what they’re doing right now? Playing tea party together. For some reason Benji is the dog, I’ll try not to read too much into that. The point is, they’re making the best of the situation. They’ve grown closer together, they never complain about missing crowds, and they’ve grown three inches. We have Netflix and clean water and lots of ice cream.

Despite all this, and I don’t want to come across as whiny but….I DO miss the crowds. I miss shopping in person without feeling embarrassed I’m risking my life to buy those cool new stripped socks I saw from the window. I had to cancel a trip home this summer. I just miss people being happy, too, I think. People are scared. And the angry anti-mask people are the most scared of us all.

I don’t need to get political. That’s what a facebook rant is all about, am I right? (You know I love you!)

Point is – we’re all feeling that big, heavy poo in the middle of our really clean pool. And taking the turd out of the pool in November is only the first step. We need to clean the water, too, before we can jump back in.

That means taking a good, hard look at ourselves. Are we actively searching out ways to be a better ancestor? Are we detoxing ourselves from the turd-particulates? What are we doing to keep ourselves coping in a healthy way? Do you even know when you’re off balance? (Hint – taking a pic of the license plate of the rude person who gunned their engine and roared around you dangerously to cut in front of you in line at the Starbucks drivethru and then posting it on Instagram is funny and feels good in the moment, but also probably a sign you need to do some anti-stress work.) Yes. I am talking about me. What? You thought I was perfect? Come-on, Man! We’re all human.

Look, there’s a turd in the pool right now but it doesn’t mean we can’t clean it up, be that neighbor and friend we’ve always wanted to be, and make the world a better place. As Peter Jackson said in ‘The Hobbit’ – Saruman believes that it is only great power that can hold evil in check. But that is not what I have found. I have found it is the small things. Everyday deeds from ordinary folk that keeps the darkness at bay. Simple acts of kindness and love.

My only advice on this would be, don’t wait around for someone else to clean up their corner of the pool. We all have to pitch in. In that spirit, I will remove the Instagram post. I will try to be better tomorrow than I was today. If we all did that – it’d be a really cool world to live in.

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