Strings Attached

A mom on Facebook posted about calling her adult daughter and asking how things were going during the Coronavirus shutdown. Her daughter rattled off a number of activities happening and mentioned having bloodwork. The rest of the conversation was lost on the mom. The first thing she asked was what the bloodwork was for.

Moms are like that. We’re concerned about how our babies are doing outside of our home nests.

Even though my twin daughters are home with me, I wonder about how this surreal time is affecting them. We have spent some evenings staying up a little later to talk through anxieties and fears. I see the end of Alabama’s Safe-At-Home order as a promising heads-up that the end of quarantining is approaching. I don’t know if I can go back. I’m truly nervous about how I’m going to respond to having to go places. Not only will it be necessary to get to places on time again, I fear there will be protocols… protocols I will overlook inadvertently. I’m going to be feeling pretty silly and awkward, trying to work out the new hygienic social etiquette rules.

end of quarantine meme

In preparation, I enlisted Pearl, my youngest (but only by one minute) and craftiest, to help me sew our first face masks. Sewing is not one of my great skills, but I’ve always imagined I would become a great seamstress. As Lady Catherine DeBourgh puts it, “If I had ever learnt, I should have been a great proficient. And so would Anne…” I have tried a number of times to get my daughter interested in sewing. I asked her on this occasion if she was willing to sit at the machine. Pearl decided she’d do best to stick with the cutting out and ironing.

“Sewing is not my thing,” she said. “There are too many strings attached.”

I grinned and laughed. She’s a witty one, I thought, and, inside, my heart turned over. As her mom, I want to prepare her for anything and everything she may meet when she gets out on her own. A few sewing skills might come in handy, but one can’t be sure of what the next generation is going to need to prepare for the future. I remember the novelty of email, how much phone money I saved at college by writing electronic messages instead of calling. Here we are, during this threat of a pandemic, communicating almost entirely online. Strangely, it isn’t that big of an adjustment. But what’s next? What does Pearl need to know?

Pressing the sewing foot down on the material, I lowered the needle. One thing I’m sure about: whether she sews or not, Pearl will always have to deal with having strings attached. Our heartstrings are attached, and this mom is grateful for every minute I get to talk, laugh, work, and enjoy this short time with her.

Author: Rilla Z

I'm a scribbler. I'm genuine. My topics of interest are: this world, the worlds inside my head, and the world to come. Oh, and cups of tea. Yes, I write about my cups of tea.

6 thoughts on “Strings Attached”

  1. Ha. Y’all are hilarious.

    Don’t get too hopeful/fearful about the end of quarantine yet. The next phase of re-opening for Alabama is supposed to occur when the statewide rate of daily new cases has been trending downwards for two weeks. Currently, new cases have been trending upward for a week (since April 30), so unless our governor simply caves in to the political pressure, we are not going to be lifting any restrictions in the near future, let alone ending the Safer-At-Home order altogether. You can monitor the daily new case rate here:

    Below the map– easy to overlook– are tabs that say “Cases”, “Test Sites”, “Daily”, etc. Click on Daily. The purple line is the 14-day moving average, and that is the line that needs to be sloping downwards consistently for 14 days before the next phase of reopening, according to the guidance that has been given. (That guidance may change, of course.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! My schedule has already been changing due to businesses reopening, so it’s nice to think things could return gradually to the norm (whatever that becomes) rather than a stack of new events all demanding my attention the first week out of quarantine. That’s the type of overkill I think I’m unconsciously stressing about.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s not going to be all at once– again, assuming the government follows the guidance they themselves have given, which they may or may not. They may be overtaken by events, or overtaken by political pressure, or both. Looking back now, we see that the government’s response to the virus has been inconsistent at many points (in putting it that way I am being as charitable as I can). There may be further inconsistency ahead.

        Assuming there isn’t though, and things go to plan, the move toward normalcy will happen gradually. The lockdown came upon us all very quickly, but ending the lockdown will happen much more slowly. The reason for that is, the virus has not actually gone away. But, we can’t stay locked down forever either because people’s mortgages and rent and other expenses have not gone away either. There needs to be a middle ground.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Ha. Well, I said all that, but yesterday’s updated Safer At Home order has removed a whole bunch of restrictions all at once. Hair and nail salons open, gyms open, restaurants and bars open, 10-person limit lifted– no limit now. Only real restriction is to keep 6-foot social distance with people not of the same household.

          Liked by 1 person

    1. I guess I should expect this type of gush when I write about your granddaughter! 😁 Thanks for being so supportive! I can never truly prepare them to figure out the things of the future, as much as I want to. That’s God’s job. I can only hope I’ve prepared them to take God’s hand and let Him lead— which is how you parented Realm, too. I love and appreciate you for it!


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