Pandemic Life is Ending

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Pandemic life has given me lots of time to think about my life and my priorities. We’ve all had a unique pause in life. When I can find those moments of quiet, I’ve spent time reflecting on what matters to me.

With more people getting vaccinated I keep thinking about things I’ve missed, what I’m looking forward to getting back to, and what I’m glad I won’t be going back to.

Things I have missed:

  • Hugs: I’ve never really been much of a hugger, but after months and months of only being able to touch those who live in my house, I can’t wait to get back to hugging those I love most. I can guarantee the first few hugs will be long and awkward. There will likely be tears. I want these moments to last! So, more hugs will become a new part of life that lets me show the people I love how much they mean to me.
  • Traveling: As someone who used to travel for work and pleasure, it has been too long since I’ve been anywhere else. I’m hoping the adventure and excitement outweigh all my fears. My sense of adventure has been stagnant for far too long. Getting back out there to eat, see and experience all the places that have been put on hold is something I can’t wait to get back to.

What I want to do first:

  • Eating out: One of the things I love the most about Charleston is its amazing food scene. Filled with creativity and collaboration, I am excited to see how the food and beverage industry continues to support each other in new and innovative ways. I cannot wait to get back out and support this community as they work hard to get back on their feet.
  • Prioritizing self-care: Like many moms, I’m the worst at taking care of myself. There are others or guilt or tiredness that seem to always get in the way. Given the pressures of the last year, I’m committing to myself (and to all of you) that figuring out what self-care looks like for me is at the top of my to-do list!

What and who I want to keep at bay:

  • Children’s birthday parties: There, I said it. While I love your kid and want them to feel special on their day, I do not want to spend the few hours that the weekend allows in a place that smells like dirty feet, is filled with screaming children while my kid is pumped full of sugar only to be sent home for me to deal with. Kid’s birthday parties just aren’t my thing, so I will be doing whatever it takes to attend as few as possible.
  • Negative people: Maybe it’s getting older or the isolation we’ve all felt over the last year, but spending time with people who bring me down is off the table. The pandemic, politics, and personal priorities have shown me a lot about myself and others. I’m committed to prioritizing those who fill my bucket!

I realize we have a long way to go before the pandemic is over. People have and continue to experience this time and space in so many different ways. Everyone will go back to their “new normal” at their own pace. I hope we all continue to prioritize our own health and happiness while also supporting the same for others.

What are the priorities that you want to focus on and what will you be saying goodbye to as we move back into life?

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A South Carolina native, Erica is originally from the Upstate and has moved back to Charleston with her family after a 10 year, traffic-filled hiatus in Atlanta, GA. Having lived in only two states she likes to explore different cultures through travel and food.  Of all the hats Erica wears her most important roles are as a wife, mother, daughter and fundraiser for her alma mater, College of Charleston. She has been married to her college sweetheart for 13 years and together they have to kiddos that keep them on their toes.  She prides herself on being honest about motherhood and enjoys learning from other moms who tell it like it is. When life offers a little down time Erica enjoys wave jumping at the beach, unapologetically watching bad TV and organizing and re-organizing everything from the dishwasher to the sock drawers to help calm her inner OCD.

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