SOLC Day 23: Pivoting

March 2021 SOLC–Day 23
A huge thank you to Two Writing Teachers for all that they do to create an amazing community of writers and a safe, welcoming space to write, learn, share and grow.

No one started the dishwasher last night and there are still a few dishes in the sink. I rinse them, reorganize a few things in the dishwasher and start it up. The soft hum of the working machine fills the kitchen.

In the adjacent room, I sit in front of my notebook. Thinking about the day ahead. Trying not to panic. Trying to prioritize. Trying to find the path that will lead me through this momentary blip and out the other side.

Because yesterday was a normal Monday. Until it wasn’t.

I thought I knew what I’d be doing. Until I didn’t.

The principal came down to see me around 10:15 while the kids were at Specials.

I didn’t suspect a thing. Until I did.

Soon, I realized that innocuous-looking legal pad he carried was an artifact of what he was doing. Contact tracing.

Soon, I realized that it was not going to be a normal Monday. At all.

So, today I sit in front of my notebook and my computer. And I plan my path to remote learning for the next week.

I remind myself I’m lucky that we haven’t had to do this yet this year.

I remind myself I’m lucky that I am two weeks past my first vaccine dose.

I remind myself I’m lucky to have a “day of grace” in which to get things figured out.

In the kitchen, the dishwasher hums through its cycles. The soft whoosh is reassuring. Steadying. Even while I sit here, wondering how to embark on this transitional day, I have already started something in motion. Something is getting done.

17 thoughts on “SOLC Day 23: Pivoting

  1. humbleswede says:

    You will get through this, and by the end of it, you will feel much more confident. I had one really odd week where I was remote but my class was in-person. This is just such a strange time. I like the way you used the hum of the dishwasher as your bass line. There are still some bits of normal. Good luck with this new challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Tim Gels says:

    Your words “innocuous-looking legal pad” didn’t hit me as hard as the actual appearance of it hit you, but I definitely felt it. I’m hoping your time passes quickly and without a hitch–I’m confident you’ve got this situation under control.

    Liked by 1 person

    • mbhmaine says:

      This year has been strangely liberating. I’ve let go of many unrealistic expectations and am more relaxed about it. It’ll be fine…more or less…and as long as the kids feel positive about it and are learning and working together, we’re good.


  3. margaretsmn says:

    Baby steps. No one is expecting anything grand. You’ll get through this. But, ugh! I feel your pain. You want to throw something but know that it’s not really anyone’s fault. It just IS.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Amanda Potts says:

    Oh! That innocuous-looking legal pad – dang it all! I’m glad that you already have a dose and that you have some time. And I hope that the calming hum of the dishwasher & the mundanity of everyday life are as comforting to you in your real life as they are in this slice.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. My buddy at Cheverus High School in Portland has been home for a week because of three Covid cases. They, too, had gone almost the whole year. Expect the unexpected. Godspeed.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. hardly an artist says:

    It was a normal March 2020 until it wasn’t. Catchy and engaging repeater line. Hope that your quarantine goes smoothly!


  7. Anonymous says:

    You pulled me in with every line of this. I love the repeated but also differing lines and the way that you tie it all together in the end. I’m sending well wishes to you!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I could feel my anxiety swelling as I read your post. When you mentioned your principal and contact-tracing, it made me think of the day when this happened to me exactly a month ago. It is so unsettling. I’m glad for you that you had a transition day and wish you a smooth remote ride. Stay healthy.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. kd0602 says:

    Ah…the dreaded quarantine. Up to this point, I have avoided it (through no fault of my won), although I have watched my colleagues deal with it. I’m sure you will deal with it gracefully…and maybe find a silver lining. Maybe an interesting slice will come out of your next few days. Stay well!



  10. macrush53 says:

    Really liked the idea of the pivots and the dishwasher whirring. I can imagine that this was a bit frightening,


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