My brain is racing in a failed attempt to process the events that have unfolded in just over 2 weeks. Such a short span of time has never felt so overwhelming, so life-altering, so surreal.
On March 12 the Governor announced that Ohio schools would be on a 3 week “extended break”. As I closed my classroom door a week ago, I couldn’t help but feel overcome with emotions: fear, anxiety and sadness. Like many, I had so many questions: When would I be back? How would our district, state, country and perhaps the world change between now and then?
It feels like a lifetime ago already that students last entered my classroom door. In reality it’s only been one week. One week of teaching online while trying to “homeschool” my toddler, make sure my infant isn’t standing on tables or pulling knives out of dishwashers (both things that she tried and admittedly accomplished last week) and one week of trying to wrap my mind around this new “normal”.
I’m thankful that technology allows us to see family and friends and still feel connected during what has the potential to be an extremely isolating and lonely time. FaceTime, Zoom, Google Hangout, Google Duo and Skype are now a part of our daily routines in order to work, play and connect.
I am someone who likes having a plan. I like having organization. I like having answers. I have none of these things currently and no promise of them is on the horizon. What started as a few weeks of social distancing is quickly shaping up to be much longer.
The unknown feels overwhelming. I am learning that I have to take it one day at a time. Some days it’s more like one hour at a time.
Despite the anxiety and fear that is more real than ever both in and around me, I still feel hope. It feels like a both/and scenario. It feels heavy knowing that things will continue to get worse before they get better. They will. We know that and yet that doesn’t necessarily make it easier to process. However, I am convinced that God is not shaken by this catastrophic storm.
Dr. Amy Acton, Director of the Ohio Department of Health, said in a briefing this week, “This is the time you will see quiet descend on our country…as it should.” My prayer is that we would be quiet enough to hear God’s whispers of peace and near enough to Him that our words, our deeds and our love would echo the sound of His steady heartbeat. A sound that is sure to speak louder and more powerfully than fear and anxiety.