Like most, during the months of April, May and part of June, I wondered what my purpose was anymore. I was doing my part in physical distancing to help slow the spread, and while I was so grateful that I had a job, it looked nothing like normal.
I was learning new things within our organization and working on projects I likely never would have given the circumstances, but it wasn’t what I was use to for the last three and a half years. My husband recently retired from the police department one week after the pandemic began, so mix him leaving his job after 22 years, to being home 24/7 with a one year old and nine year old, learning to homeschool, potty train and trying to work full-time while at home amidst the chaos. It was a LOT all at once to say the least.
So, we decided to do something we always wanted to do, like any normal person would. We bought a very large 2009 38 foot fifth wheel camper to renovate. I mean, we had so much extra time on our hands, right? We have owned a camper for years, but we outgrew it and wanted something bigger to call home when we took trips across the country someday. I make it sound so simple…
When we brought it home, friends of ours who were touring it for the first time asked, “Did you hire a marriage counselor during this process?” We laughed then, but a month into it, I remember thinking I really need to ask for referrals.
I suspected the long days my husband might spend homeschooling and potty training while I was working would be taken out with a sledge hammer on demolition days. That did indeed happen some days, but not as many as I thought. We had the normal bickering of “I had design ideas” and “he knew the nuts and bolts of what structurally couldn’t happen.” We compromised.
We learned so much about each other during this process. We established he would do the majority of the demolition with the help of some family and friends here and there and I would help with paint, layout designs and decorating. Then he would put it all back together. I really think he got the raw end of this deal, but he was happy to do it and make my dreams come true. It was crazy to see the difference from Day One, after demo and the current outcome. It looks almost nothing like what we started with. We took what was old and made it new again.
We did the majority of all this during quarantine and learned so much – not only about ourselves, but about how time standing still can make us find who we are, what we want, and how to compromise during difficult situations and change.
So tell me, did you learn something new already this year? Was it learning to cut or color your own hair, or selflessly making masks for our healthcare heroes and first responders? Did you learn a new instrument, make TikTok videos with your kids, do a new craft or did you simply learn just to survive upon a new normal? Because if so, that’s okay too!
Whatever you’ve learned so far this year or continue to learn, I hope you come out smarter, stronger, ready for a brighter future and feeling new again!
Morgan Gunder is a community and broker liaison for Reid Health Alliance™. Born in the South and raised in the Midwest, she’s a wife and mother with a passion for traveling, learning and technology. Like this article? Feel free to respond to CoveredBridge@HealthAlliance.org. Thanks for reading!