A Sheltered Childhood



Their childhood was interrupted by history.

Schools closed without celebration.  

They washed their hands a lot.

Wore masks.

By Halloween, they were tired of face coverings.

Dad and Mom stayed home from work, too nervous to be fun.

Lots of people stayed home.

Outside, it was so quiet.

Only a few cars going by. Less planes humming overhead.

Stores closed.

Ah, for hours with Mom working the clothes racks.

Computer games felt like online math on a smaller screen.

It was wacky Wednesday every day, where they wore pajamas perpetually.

They ate school lunches at home.

No lunch bunch to complain to about mushy vegetables and hard grilled cheese sandwiches.

So, they talk to friendly faces on a screen.

Even do old-school texting—snail mailing notes back and forth.

Relatives visit from their cars. No messy kisses or tweaking cheeks!

Things come to the door almost every day: take-out food, books, shoes, clothes, furniture, toys, decorations.

They think more than they ever thought.

They fight more than they ever fought.

And wonder if their pandemic stories will make future kids say, “Ooh” and “Aah” and “What did it feel like to go through that?”

They’re storytellers now.

Heroes and heroines, whose childhood is present history.




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