One of the first things I noticed when stay-at-home orders began trickling into place around the country were how many people were suddenly outdoors playing basketball in the driveway, riding bicycles, walking, and running. Just the sight of it felt as if the earth was slowing on its axis to a time when life was simpler and we valued play, being outside, and physical movement. Only then, we didn’t consciously think about “needing” to do those things because there weren’t digital distractions and sixty-hour work weeks.
I’m of the generation of Jacqueline Kennedy, tea parties, and handwritten thank you notes. As a little girl, my mother sat me at the kitchen table with a notecard and pen, and I wasn’t allowed to get up until I had crafted a thank you note—free from errors, of course—to Aunt Nikki for my $20 birthday check. It felt like a “don’t get up from the table until you have eaten all your vegetables” mom-instruction.
Today is Earth Day. For each of us, it has an individual meaning. It can be a remembrance of travel where the seas and air were crystal clear, where the animals roamed free, and there was nary a person near. It can be a reminder to be more environmentally conscious in our daily routine. It can be a personal call to escape your home for a bit of time and exercise in nature. It can be many things to each of us.