It’s not often that life changes quickly enough for us to recognize the “lasts“.
The day we canceled our trip to Costa Rica due to COVID-19, I checked the kids out of school early, a Wednesday. I didn’t realize they wouldn’t go back until May, and maybe not at all.
That night we went to dinner to to commiserate. Even then, with all the articles I’d read trying to decide whether or not to take our trip…. I had no idea it would be the last time we ate in a restaurant for the foreseeable future.
We ate at Texas Roadhouse. My kids had never been and I was excited for them to try the rolls. AJ played with the bucket of peanuts – and Justin watched what he thought was the beginning of the Jazz game. – Except it wasn’t. The Jazz walked off the floor.
He didn’t know it, but he’d already watched the last game of the season the week before.
I let my kids ditch school the next day because we were supposed to be in Costa Rica, and we weren’t.
There were several unrealized lasts that day, and a couple firsts.
We sat in an empty theater and watched Sonic – a last time at the theater for awhile. But, never before had I brought Clorox wipes to a theater and wiped down the seats, that day I did.
We also had orthodontist appointment – now there’s no going back until at least May.
A trip through the drive through for ice cream, a stop at a park…..Both unrepeated since.
We were supposed to come home from Costa Rica today. Instead, I went to my kids’ schools, to pick up homework packets and lap tops. I was met by smiling teachers wielding gloves and disinfectant wipes. I smiled at them from my car. Homeschool has begun.
Yesterday we went hiking while tanks rolled in to a tiny Italian town to help them move their dead and I wondered if this would be my last hike with my kids.
A double reality surrounds me. I mourn for those that are sick and dying, for those losing jobs, and for those in already precarious situations and look for small ways to help from my home.
AND – I focus on homework and dinner. AJ and I find all the fire hydrants between my house and my Mom’s. I watch movies, read books, stare at nature up close, and enjoy having all my kids gathered in with no where to be – and I wonder – is this the last?
So I try to savor it, just in case.