I remember the day Princess Diana died. We were newly married. I was upstairs in the bedroom, reading. Allen came running upstairs, burst into the bedroom and blurted out, "Princess Diana is dead!" I couldn't believe it. We spent the next hour watching the news on tv.
I remember many details of my life when the 9/11 attacks happened. Jill was pre-school age and I had organized a group of moms to do our own at home pre-school. That day it was my turn to run pre-school. I heard the news and when Faye arrived with her daughter, we talked about what was happening. Little did we know it was still happening. During the day I kept the tv on to see what else would happen. From our kitchen window, we could see the airplanes lining up at the airport because they were all grounded. In the afternoon, we went to the church building and made sandwiches for all the people stranded at the airport. As the days unfolded, the horror continued.
I For most teachers, in Alberta anyway, March 13 is a day we'll never forget. It is the day that was the last normal day of school before the pandemic. We went home that Friday not realizing that was it. Life wasn't going to be the same for a long time. I would have never thought that two years later, those changes would still be felt.
I looked back in my bullet journal at March 2020. Jill had been home from her mission for a couple of months and was in training at Central Mountain Air for a flight attendant position. Peirce was in grade 12. Allen was still really struggling with his health (we didn't know a heart procedure would be on the horizon) and I was working hard to keep up with school and with seminary.
The next week students did not come to school. The Premier announced on Sunday that school would be cancelled. We had one week to go until Spring Break and so we spent the week at school without students. We spent a lot of time in shock. We still didn't think that things would unfold as they would. When we were asked to clean out our student's desks, I thought they were overreacting. In the end, we ended up spending the rest of the school year online...and what a learning curve that was!
One great blessing I'll never forget is that on Friday, March 13, for some reason I decided to have my students clean out their desks of anything that didn't need to be in their desks. I was so grateful the next week! Teachers told stories of digging through moldy food, scads of garbage and scrap paper and more. I didn't have any of that because a little voice told me on Friday that I should have my students clean out their desks.
As mandates were rolled out and lock downs were put in place, we learned a new way of life. We learned as teachers to turn on a dime. We learned how to socially distance, how to worship at home and we saved a heck of a lot of money on gas since no one was going anywhere.
The world will never be the same. Now there is a lot of unrest, even though mandates are being lifted and there is a vaccine and we know how to keep ourselves safe. Somehow, people feel a need to protest. Sure, there are still measures in place for cross-boarder travel - but given the covid numbers in the states and some other countries over the past two years, I'm okay with following the Canadian rules. We have come out of this much better than many other countries have. All of this has been one long Lord of the Flies re-run where we have seen some people be quite self-centered and only care about what they want or what their traditions are versus the instinct to follow a set of rules and values so that we can live together and look after each other.
Through all of this, we have learned some good lessons on simplifying life and what is really vital. May we never forget!