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Most of us have been hunkering down more this last year than the one before. Some have cut back very little on their out-of-home excursions while others have kept them to a minimum. I’m on the minimum side and lately I’ve been thinking about re-entry.

I got my first shot last week, and aside from feeling somewhat less anxious I’m also aware that within a couple of months I’ll be as “free” to go out as I’m going to be. The CDC recently said that if I were with a small group of people who all had completed their vaccines and it had been a couple weeks we could take off our masks, hug and carry on much like we had before.

I know some people have been doing that the whole time, but for me, that’s a green light I haven’t seen for some time. I wonder how I will approach it. I’ve grown accustomed to being home. Since I’m mostly retired one day is pretty much like another. I eat, I write, I walk, do some gardening, write some more and watch some series. I’ve had the luxury of not going to the market. I don’t miss it, but I do miss the farmer’s market. I’ll probably go back there, especially since it’s outdoors. I have tickets to the Van Gogh exhibit in July. I’ll go there. Maybe some concerts, a ballgame, eventually a movie, but I’m guessing if you add up the number of outings before and after I’ll be reducing.

It’s one part PTSD. The frayed nerves of this year don’t immediately get back to where they were. I’ll probably wince and turn away when someone sneezes and doesn’t cover themselves. When I’m in that movie theater, concert venue and I’m sharing air with everyone I’m probably wearing my mask. Although I’ll have to take it off to eat the popcorn.

I know I’m more cautious about health than many and for the most part I’m glad for them. I don’t mind worrying about this stuff, because I’m still alive and hope to remain so. As you and I get ready for the loosening of society’s and our restrictions let’s continue to give thanks to all the people who have helped get us through and our compassion to those who didn’t make it through or lost someone.

I’ve said these words of Bob Dylan many times and hope to say them many more, “The only thing I knew how to do was to keep on keeping on.”

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