I hadn't realized how "at home" I had become until about a month ago, after getting my booster, I drove to an antiques mall about an hour south of here. I hadn't driven alone for any distance other than camp for two years! 

2020 and 2021 were hard years for the world and hard years for me personally. It is hard to lose both your parents about a year apart. It is hard to lose caregivers we knew our son was safe with. They moved away. Getting out of the house for any length of time except weekends was a challenge. 

So, one of my goals is simply to "get out of the house" more. The acronym is GOOTH.  Get Out of the House.  But in a good way! This has been a challenge for for a number of reasons - the pandemic has been one, and also the lack of consistent staff for my son who is autistic. But it's doable if I am creative and plan ahead. 

The pandemic has been super hard in a number of ways for everyone, but especially my son who has a harder time understanding why things changed. But it has also offered up some things we might not have thought to try, or which wouldn't have been available before. The Zoom Book Club offered at the Bangor Public Library is one example. Libraries have had to really work hard to meet their mission in these times, and online access has been key. The book club has ended up being a social time for my son, and also a bridge to doing some things in person, with support. The pandemic (and past book clubs led by teachers in school) opened an opportunity to interact with people. A win!  We will take it! 

Another gift was the ability to connect with people (artists) via video/zoom to share what we are working on. Kind of a 21st century quilting guild. How lucky we are to have this resource! Even if the pandemic disappears, we can still get far-flung friends and artists together. I had to do these things in the evening when my husband was home, but what a great thing to be able to do. It's a virtual GOOTH.

Some other ways to GOOTH?  I can get in my car, plug in my phone, and talk to a far-off friend at a beautiful spot. I can drive to a different town and check out different antiques malls on a weekend. Antiquing is a very mindful and relaxing activity. I can drive to visit museums. Maine has a number of good art museums and galleries within two hours of driving. When there are not virus spikes, I can take a class in quilting or rug hooking, etc. Join something. Now that we are vaccinated/boosted, my son and I can do more community outings, too. 


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"Do not let what you cannot do
keep you from doing what you can do."

John Wooden