Maybe they go together. They block others out and they keep things in. They keep in any germs you forgot to leave at home. They keep out the germs of others.
We’ve come to think of people in terms of germs or infected, are they safe, can I touch. Do I stay my distance. With the masks, we can’t see what people think based on their facial expression. My dogs have an odd expression-the turned head in confusion and yearning to understand where the voice comes from.
I’ve heard some say it doesn’t effect kids and their social emotional development to wear masks. If it effects adults and their ability to connect with people, how could it not impact kids? Growing accustomed and not being impacted are different altogether.
Onto the fences. A new one was erected and today appeared on my walk in the adjacent neighborhood. A neighborhood that is mostly empty of human activity. There are next door neighbors who have never met after living adjacent for years. This last bit is to say-the fence isn’t really needed to keep out, but only to keep in. This fence was at the house where the “neighbor” told me to not step foot on her property after she said she just moved in. Nice to meet you too.
On seeing the fence, I can feel the tension build just being blocked from my usual route. I see I can walk around it, which turns out to be fine. Except I feel the slightest of anger at the fact of it. A fence is there to keep me out, I think.
As my dog Logan and I continue walking to our backyard around the fence, feeling the irritability, I see my next door neighbor’s white picket fence. That fence is there to keep their dogs in. Ahhh, I breathe a sigh of relief. That one’s ok, they are ok and I am once again accepted in my neighborhood.
(I have a strong need for community and I believe we all do but have forgotten about it. Reach out if you’d like to talk more about community and check out the book, Belonging by Radha Agrawal for more about these ideas.)