Today would have been my Dad’s 93rd birthday. I’ve written about him many times before, so that’s not so much what’s on my mind today. What I am marveling at is my own birthday, in March, and how strange and distant it seems now. It was a wonderful day, full of so many of my favourite things. I had no idea at the time how extraordinary it would seem now. It was in so many ways the last day of the old world.
I took the day off. I haven’t had a full day off since.
I got my hair cut–and it hasn’t been cut since.
I got a massage–my first–and haven’t had another since.
My husband and I went to downtown Toronto and ate at Storm Crow Manor. I haven’t eaten in a restaurant since.
He went to play board games, while I went to a concert. He played a board game live one last time, the following Sunday. I haven’t been to an in-person concert since.
I feel as if I have aged another year in a little over three months.
We’re moving to Phase 2 here on Friday. If I wanted to, I could get a haircut then (although I won’t.). We’ll be able to eat on the patio of a restaurant–but takeout is largely fine for us now. The museum where I volunteer has announced it’s reopening soon–although I don’t yet know what that means for me. We’re allowed social circles of up to ten people–and we’re visiting some good friends on Saturday. Maybe we’ll play a game. For certain there will be good food, and the joy of visiting with friends in person, and we’ll get to see their new house.
And I’ll dream of live concerts. I’ve been attending online Tafelmusik presentations the last couple of weeks, and there is the Berlin Philharmonic to watch and listen to, but who knows when I will see a concert live, in person, again. Or a play. I watched the Stratford production of Hamlet on Sunday, and the tale of the melancholic prince made me ache for the season that was cancelled this year. Live performances are the thing I miss most, that and the casual live get-togethers with friends for SCA meetings or gaming days. Memories and Zoom or YouTube streaming have to do for now.
At least the creeping anxiety has largely abated, although there is still worry for the future. Day-to-day life is tolerable, even enjoyable or inspiring at times, for the most part, although I still wake up most mornings wanting to simply roll over and shut away the world for awhile. But usually now I go to bed at least moderately content, and will reminisce about glistening, soft-focus days of my childhood, where once I was safe, where once a shining future lay in front of me, without limits, where the whole concept of physical distancing did not even exist. Perhaps I’ll play around of poker with my Dad again, and I’ll go for the scissors when he tells me to cut the cards.
That’ll do for now.
Happy Birthday, Dad. I miss you. Fly low.