What is the Lesson? I have always looked for lessons in everything because I know there is one. Quarantine started on March 16, 2020, for most of us. Everything was closed, shut down, and put on pause. It felt like our world was shattering, and during this pandemic storm, a tornado formed with pieces of our life, creating a trail of sorrow in our path. It started with my grandfather becoming bed ridden after a stroke he had earlier in the year. He obtained a bad case of pneumonia and his health deteriorated drastically. During a safe visit with my grandparents, my daughter and her brother went outside to play tag. The driveway was slick and sent my daughter sliding fast where she landed on her knee and cut it to the bone. Despite the risks, I rushed her to the E.R. where she received 11 stitches. As the tornado of life slashed through without ease, I watched my family pull together despite feeling conflicted no matter which way we turned. We were terrified deep within because the world was in a state of emergency. But, we held onto what we knew, and that was the love of our family. The world can't take that away. So, we held onto each other and made the most of each day. Not long after, schools canceled for the remainder of the year, leaving all kids homeschooled. Since schools and social gatherings had been stopped, all of my daughter's dance competitions (already paid for) were canceled until further notice. As if the rain couldn't give us a little sunshine in our path, our dog of six years, Bailey, got into poison from somewhere in the neighborhood and the vet couldn't save her. We had to say good-bye. Then, one evening after dinner, we were entertaining who could jump the highest on our trampoline and I came straight down as my ankle rolled underneath my body weight. To this day I do not know if it was broken, sprained, or fractured. I never went to the Doctor. And to top it all off, on Easter, several real tornadoes hit all around us. We were extremely fortunate and lost power for four days and counted our blessings for that. Using a generator, we managed to save some food and use lights in the house as well as help our neighbors with power. The schoolwork was put on hold unless we used a hot spot from our cellular devices. Here I am two years later looking back on all of these things that happened but remembering the precious times with my children and loved ones. Times that I hope they remember too. It is during these times of trial that we find our strength by lifting others. I am grateful for each of these events because it instilled some of the most beautiful memories and lessons during one of the most terrifying times. None of us knew what was to come, but we took one day at a time and made it an adventure every day. Each one of the “fortunate events” led to something amazing. When my daughter was hurt, she couldn't have danced, so the competitions being canceled was a blessing in disguise. Because our lives were put on hold, we had gained the most precious time with my grandfather before he passed away peacefully over the summer. We can never get that time back and for those moments of life on hold, I am thankful. My ankle healed, like all things do with time. Though Bailey's death was an experience filled with sadness and sorrow, we were given more time with her, and I know she knew how much she was loved. Sharing emotions together is a beautiful experience. Homeschooling the kids was a challenge, and I know others out there can relate. I kept them on a schedule because I know how important that is. I also made sure to sit with them and give them my undivided attention, making that my priority. I heard them when they would tell me, “My teacher doesn't do it like that,” or “I don't want to do this!” Even when they asked me, “Why do I have to get up early? None of my friends do this.” I understood. Listen to me. I will never give up on you, children, and you cannot give up on yourself. Never be a victim of your circumstance. Taking Time Is Okay Some of the most beautiful memories are created during the hardest times, and sometimes, the depths of our sorrow can create a beautiful world of happiness.