My Family Blames Me for the Pandemic

I’m doing my best to keep our heads above water but I’m not a superhero

P.S. I Love You


Photo by Bill Anderson-Blough on Unsplash

The four of us have been self-isolating together for 298 days. After so long, days blur, blend, mesh and take alternative forms, and all we have left to do is argue with each other.

In the beginning, it didn’t feel so hard. We had just emerged from Iowa’s traditional subzero winter when the governor sounded the alarm. Willingly distracted by songbirds and spring’s bloom, we planted enough seeds to supply us with food for the next year.

Days became weeks, then months, but it didn’t really matter. The weather was perfect. The earth provided more than enough space and endless freedom. We spent our mornings eating a variety of freshly picked berries and melons from the fruit garden, afternoons cooling off beneath the canopy of the arboretum and evenings around the fire pit with our dinner sizzling over open flames.

If we were to create a timeline of the pandemic based on the decisions made by our elected officials, this is how it would go: In the house, out of the house, back into the house, back out of the — whoa, wait. Turn it around. Okay, it’s clear. Go! This offers zero stability. It’s no way to live.

If we were to create a timeline of the