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Mama’s Musings-What is normal? By Lani Goins

During the COVID shutdown, people spoke of longing for a return to “normal.” I have since heard the word used many times in similar contexts. But “normal” is the wrong word.

What people long for is safety. Do we find that in normalcy? Sometimes. I know all about not feeling safe. Wishing for “normal” is the same longing we have to go “home.” It is not a need for a physical building, especially if for one reason or another there is no safety in your house.

Or we say, “I want my mom.” At any age. This is much the same. I want to feel safe, and I don’t. In the week preceding my surgery, and the days immediately following it, I really did want my mom. Both of them. Neither of them is able to drive anymore. But my daughter came up the day of my surgery to drive me to and from the hospital and to pick up her younger brother, James, from school. I had hoped she could stay for another day. Instead, she brought her puppy, Luca. He is a 5-month-old daschound/labrador retriever-mix. It was Luca’s first time in the city. He saw horses for the first time. He became anxious when the horses crossed to our side of the street, and I comforted him.

The day after my surgery was the hardest. James went to school, and my older son, Erick, went to work. I was sore, and tired, and alone. Happily, one of James’ friend’s parents walked him home. My student’s mother ordered dinner delivered to our house. So I didn’t have to do anything at all. That was good, because I was in no condition to do anything anyway.

I still can’t lift more than a few pounds for a few more weeks. The hardest part is remembering not to do that.

It was certainly not a “normal” week. But it made me thankful for my family, and friends, and I could console myself that things would be better soon.

By Lani Goins