I wake up to much of the now usual- teachers sharing resources that have become free for students to use. There's also one district email clarifying some general things, like how the buildings are closed and offering resources for the well being of students and the staff. The email also assures all employees that pay will happen for all employees during this time period. People that are employed at hourly rates will be paid their average amount of hours they work in a week. The district is the one making these decisions and they are doing it right. It is comforting to know at least these people are being taken care of.
One more email goes out later in the day. This one is for parents as well as staff. The big announcement here is that there will be no grades for the second or third quarter. There are also many links with resources for technology support as well as emotional well-being. I have not really had enough time working in this district to gain any pride for being here, but today I think I am starting to feel the pride.
I emailed my team of elementary instrument teachers to check in how everyone was doing and get the password for our website. Two of the three members ignored my individualized question to them asking how they were doing. I hope this means that they read it too fast and that it does not mean they are really having a hard time. Or maybe they just are emotionally tired of people checking in with them. That is real.
I do a little more school work to help get ready for tomorrow's Extended Learning Launch. Most of what I had to do was just change a file slightly so it was ready to put on the district's specials website. Sounds easy enough, but I ended up spending 20 minutes becoming very frustrated that is was not doing what I wanted it to do. I am tech savy enough and have some website experience, so I can only imagine what the almost retired and never used the internet teacher is experiencing right now. An hour or two later of last minute adjustments and I am ready to launch a new way of learning.
The rest of my day is what, in any other circumstance, I would have called "beyond a trifecta." On "normal" days, a trifecta is a day where I practice cello then do yoga then take a shower. Usually I do not have energy/time for cello and yoga in a day, but when I get the trifecta days it feels great. Today I did not only that, but I also finished my book, wrote my blog, took a walk outside with Max, and cooked a meal. It felt great to have all the time to do all the things.
Walks are perhaps the most important thing to me now. They are the only thing I leave the apartment for, and the only fresh air I breath. It is the only time I see people that I do not live with. It is what connects me to the nature around us. Max and I walk through the woods and spot the dogs together, pausing every now and then just to look and listen to the world around us.
Amidst this day that is disorienting-ly full of things I love, there are elections happening in Florida, Illinois, and Arizona. I am not on Twitter, but Max shows me pictures people are posting from voting locations. The CDC has recommended that people stay home and if they have to go out to stay 6 feet away from each other and to avoid gatherings of more than 50 people. The pictures of polling places show more than 5 people people shoulder to shoulder in long lines in unventilated polling places. Tweets describe polling places not opening because of staff refusing to show up and utter confusion over where voters should go. This is not what democracy looks like.
We watch some non-political TV before bed. News comes in that Biden won all the states up for grabs. Tweets are still popping up of people waiting in line to vote. But my mind and body have been cared for today. One day at time. Not all at once.