We are living in a historic moment. The Minnesota Historical Society is collecting and preserving Minnesotans’ stories related to the COVID-19 health crisis so future generations can learn how the pandemic has impacted our lives. We invite you to read a sampling of these stories here and to share your story.
This is a time of want.
Everyone wants something they cannot or should not have right now.
Some people want a haircut or a manipedi.
Some people want to go to the gym.
Some of us want to go to the beach.
Some want a massage.
Some want their job back.
Or to open their business again.
Some of us want the fever to be just a fever.
The dry cough to be a dry cough.
The compression in the chest to be only the weight of these days.
Some of us want a coronavirus test.
Some of us want their COVID-19 to go away,
To live to fight another day.
Some want to be with a loved one who is quarantined in the hospital.
Some want their loved one(s) back.
Or to celebrate their life at a funeral with family and friends.
Some of us want food in the house.
Some of us want help with rent and bills.
Some of us want to help.
Some of us want a living wage for work now deemed essential.
Some want sports again.
I want sports again. I miss sports
(just not enough to hurry them back).
Some of us want to go to a bar
or a restaurant or the movies
or a play or a poetry reading or a dance performance or a concert
or a bookstore or a coffee shop or...
Some of us want to travel.
Maybe you want to go shopping at a store that's closed
or get groceries without a mask on
or unpack them without making your kitchen a sterile field.
Maybe you are a hospital worker separated from your spouse and kids.
Maybe you want to see them again.
Some of us want the sadness to go away.
Some of us want a good night's sleep.
I am lucky so far, my wants are small.
And still they own me.
I want to be with people IRL, to hug friends who hug and kiss friends who kiss and touch wine glasses and laugh out loud and win at cards or dice or lose and somehow still come out ahead. I want to be with my friends who have lost a loved one - to be present with them in their grief, fully present.
Some of us want a country united in mission and goals.
Some want Sweden, others New Zealand.
Some want different leadership.
Some of us want a coherent cohesive and consistent national plan.
Some of us want the status quo.
Or maybe you just want to go to the park.
Some of us want internet access so our kids can learn.
Or to go back to school in a school building.
Or a break from parenting or being parented.
Or a return to the pious rigors of college life.
Some of us want this to be a hoax.
Some of us want facts to be facts.
Some of us want science to prevail.
Some of us distrust science.
Some of us want to return to normal routines so bad they'll call the whole wide world a lie.
They'll suggest the dead deserved to die.
They'll call to cull the herd
(imagine a despair that endorses suffering and death).
Assign whatever weight you will to your wants and to mine. We all want the same thing too, an end to this pandemic, its grief and pain, a return to our normal routines, and,
if we might want one more thing, let it be this, please:
the wisdom we might gain from all this suffering.
~ By Michael Kleber-Diggs