There was once a time when I did not live without the specter of illness around every corner? I lived a life that wasn’t conditional on the spread of a virus? I spent almost five decades making plans that weren’t likely to be cancelled anywhere, any time, with little notice, because of a nasal-swabbed test result? Could it be true?
Diane Masiello is a part-time writer and a full-time mom, wife, daughter, and daughter-in-law. Like many who are currently part of the “sandwich generation,” – those who still have kids at home but are also taking care of aging parents—she is also trying to find the time to carve out some space for her own passions. In her earlier life she earned a Ph.D. in Education from New York University, and worked as an Instructor of English, then Assistant Professor of English at the University of Tampa. In 2003 she left academia to raise her two daughters—the longest, hardest job she’s ever held, and the most rewarding. During her time in academia she edited and contributed to a variety of academic publications, but her greatest joy was the publication of her first short fantasy story, “The Sunspot,” in CrossTime Science Fiction Anthology Vol. II. She has her own blog, “Afternoons with Coffee Spoons,” which started as a mommy blog but ended when she realized her daughters had become old enough that writing about them without their permission seemed invasive. She has just completed her first young adult fantasy novel, Keeper, and is starting on the maze-like road toward publication. She is thrilled to be a part of The Gloria Sirens and looks forward to the conversations her blog posts may inspire.
Would it really be so bad to lose the world?
Anxiety . . . is an illness of “what-ifs.” The mind takes the most minuscule threat and blows it up to–not even huge proportions, just unrealistically large ones.
Of course, there is no way I am going to fix a fractured world. There is no way I am going to fix even a fraction of it. But as Mother Teresa says, “We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.” Accepting that my contribution will be only a drop, the question becomes “where in the ocean will my drop fall?”
For the first time since vacation planning in March, I was grateful rather than resentful we weren’t vacationing in Europe.
“The only one who can tell you ‘you can’t win’ is you and you don’t have to listen.” –Jessica Ennis
“The water doesn’t know your age.” —Dara Torres
Parties, gatherings, travel, theme park visits, celebrations, but most of all time spent face-to-face with those I love were all the things I longed for during the pandemic.
“Hard days are the best because that’s when champions are made.” –Gabby Douglas
“I’m not the next Usain Bolt or Michael Phelps. I’m the first Simone Biles.” –Simone Biles