Five dandelion seed pods float on the breeze in a clear blue sky. Photo by Kranich17 on Pixabay.
Back in October, I posted a list of firsts, interrupted by the second wave of the pandemic and the reintroduction of stricter public health measures. And, since the third wave hit—with accompanying variations of lockdown and stay-at-home recommendations and/or orders since the Fall for where I live—I’ve found it hard to hope, or plan what I’d do once public health restrictions are loosened or removed altogether.
Now that more and more people are getting vaccinated and/or eligible to book an appointment—despite some ill-planned provincial rollouts and misplaced priorities (that are finally and gradually being amended), vaccine supply interruptions and evolving information on safety issues, and vaccination booking challenges/confusion—everyday people are demonstrating that they want to do everything they can to get to the other side of this pandemic. In some cases, spending hours in lineups at pop-up clinics, or online or on the phone to book through the provincial portal or at a pharmacy, people are devoting significant time and energy to making themselves, others and the health care system safe—with many doing so in the face of work, household and vaccine inequity struggles.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve found myself finally able to exhale—even if just for a moment—and, as I saw that more family; friends; and fellow Torontonians, Ontarians and Canadians were getting their first shots, I allowed myself to feel a sense of relief and hope. I found myself daring to dream about what life will be like once stay-at-home orders and other public health measures are relaxed, and we’re able to safely gather again. For well over a year, not socializing and deciding to pare things down to simple, necessary elements, I haven’t been wearing my watch and rings; and I’ve been super casual with the wardrobe—sometimes wearing the same pair of jeans for a whole week, and the same running shoes pretty much every day. Yesterday, I put on a different pair of shoes. Today, I put on fresh cotton pants, as well as my watch and rings.
And, gradually, I’m making a wish list, including—but not limited to:
- Seeing family in person (fingers crossed for a gathering in my parents’ backyard on a weekend near the July 1 holiday)
- Seeing friends in person (my friends Lizzie, Zoltan and Val have space on their building’s backyard patio for distanced outdoor dining and movie viewing)
- Random, spontaneous stops at a convenience store or coffee shop
- Adding a painted rock to Lucas Walker’s rock snake (in The Beach neighbourhood of Toronto)
- Collecting driftwood and beach glass (see location above)
- In-store shopping at thrift and art supply stores, and book and record shops
- Seeing live outdoor performances and art shows
- Walks and coffee with friends
- Getting a hair cut
And I’m feeling like, in the near future, these will be actual, do-able things.
In the meantime, I have a dental checkup booked for next week (my first since October 2019). And my parents and I are planning a safe visit for my birthday next month (similar to our Christmas visit, with masking and distancing, even though we all have our first shots).
What’s on your wish list?