We all wonder: when will life return to normal again?
I turn off the ignition. I stay in my car. No other cars are here yet. But it’s only 4:20 p.m. I’m still 10 minutes early.
This is a big moment.
After a year of uncertainty about what to do and what not to do, this is the first of my pre-covid life volunteer opportunities that is opening back up. I wasn’t sure I would return to it when it did reopen. But now that teaching English-as-a-Second-Language has become available again, I’m saying yes.
And I’m excited about it.
Earlier in the day I reviewed my ESL workbook. I opened the Google Translate app again on my phone. I looked over the list of my students from late 2019. I wonder which ones will return to learn more English after a year of no classes?
4:25 p.m. Still no one. I check the door even though there are no cars. Maybe someone was dropped off and is inside. But no, the door is locked and the lights are out.
4:30 p.m. Now I’m officially worried. Did I get the date wrong? The time?
Or am I still trapped in the uncertainty of the pandemic?
In 2020 we all felt large and small moments when our life flipped from certainty to uncertainty. And this is continuing to happen in the first half of 2021.
But slowly, surely, with each new CDC update, we’re finding encouragement.
We’re starting to turn again from uncertainty to certainty.
This ESL opportunity has been one such moment.
But now this specific moment? No one is coming today. I’m certain.
4:35 p.m. I text the class leaders. I’ll stay until 4:40 unless I hear something first.
The response says,
“I’m so sorry! J must have forgotten to tell you that there weren’t enough students willing to return yet. We’ll try again in the fall!”
I take a minute to collect myself. I’m disappointed. I’d gotten excited for nothing. This has been a false start.
It’s still not my time to step back into normalcy.
But normalcy will keep creeping back in anyway, maybe at times when I can see it, but more likely when I’m not looking so hard for it.
I text my reply,
“No problem. These things happen. Just keep me posted.”
I crank my car and enter the afternoon traffic. I’m going back home.
Normalcy isn’t beginning today. But at least I got in a test run.‘
Or maybe now this is normal.
Has your life returned to “normal” yet, whatever that is? Is uncertainty now normal? Has it always been? Share in the comments.
UNCERTAINTY is my One Word for 2021. The One Word ‘21 Linkup will be open on May 21 for you to add your own posts, updating us on your one word.
Read more here about Uncertainty:
- Help Wanted—Can We Admit It?
- I Need a Nudge