So much has happened and not happened since the pandemic first began. And one of the things I’ve really missed is weddings. I have not been to an in-person wedding since the before times (2019), which feels like an eternity ago in this pandemic time warp. My last wedding was for one of my cousins who was marrying the love of her life. Now, three years later, it’s fitting that I had the honor of attending another cousin’s wedding this fall.
I love everything about weddings—seeing family, getting dressed up, hair did, nails did, face beat, and basking in Black love that is otherworldly. There truly is nothing like it. Then, of course, there’s the turn up at the reception. And let me tell you, nobody does weddings like Nigerians—the food, the clothes, the music, the dancing, and if there’s an open bar? Then we really going up! The pandemic is still a present reality, but I’m grateful for vaccines and boosters that enable us to recover some of what was lost in 2020. Namely, family gatherings.
Weddings, graduations, baptisms, and even funerals have always served as approximate family reunions for us. These events are usually guaranteed to bring the entire family together in one place for one purpose. For over two years, I hadn’t seen my extended family and I’m grateful that I got to do so for such a joyous occasion. With more than one million deaths in the U.S. due to COVID-19, I know it could have gone another way, and I don’t take that for granted. It’s a blessing to be in the land of the living, and I will continue to mask, stay current with my immunizations and boosters, and adhere to additional safety protocols to keep myself and others safe from the virus. Trust and believe, I was rocking my matching KN95 mask at that wedding as I did the Wobble and Electric Slide.
Prior to the pandemic, I was a germaphobe. Due to the sheer amount of travel I used to do, I’d actually started wearing masks on airplanes right before the pandemic started. I’m true to this, y’all! Naomi Campbell, the queen of the traveling hazmat suit, taught me. (I’ve even thought about adopting her hazmat suit practice because this pandemic is still pandemic-ing.) All that to say, covid has only heightened my proclivities, and I was a little nervous about catching the virus at the wedding. But I’m trying to adjust to this new normal, fraught with the tension of learning to navigate covid as an ever-present threat.
I don’t go to everything I’m invited to because of the risk of infection that may be associated with particular events. My own metrics for evaluating whether I attend an event come down to what is most important to me: my faith, my family, and my vocation. For an encounter with God and the saints at church, a lifetime of precious memories, fulfilling my purpose—I will gladly mask, wash my hands, carry hand sanitizer, bump elbows, and wear a face shield if need be. Because those experiences are invaluable to me. This is the current state of our world and the reality we all must live with, and we have to weigh the risks for ourselves. It’s not ideal, but we must learn to accept it while using wisdom and neighborly love to navigate this new terrain.
How are y’all dealing with the tension of learning to “live with covid”?Leave a Comment