This year held so much promise for celebrations across the globe – weddings, graduations, milestone birthdays, new births, etc. Then COVID-19 came along, and everything ground to a halt. Even as many regions, including Westchester County, have successfully flattened the curve, there’s an understandable reluctance to return to life as we know it.
Celebrations have taken on a new definition. Whether you postpone life events or reinvent them, it’s possible to make it pandemic-perfect despite the state of affairs.
My husband recently celebrated a milestone birthday, one that we had planned to mark with a rare, exotic trip, just the two of us. I envisioned a big backyard BBQ celebration with our closest friends. Instead, I put together a weekend of socially distant, safe activities that included a visit to his parents’ pool, outdoor drinks with another couple, a morning bike ride with his guy friends, and a video of birthday wishes from family. I even pulled off a small get-together at our town pool with our friends, who are also members.
My husband, who is not a big birthday person, was grateful for the special weekend and felt truly loved.
My daughter turns 7 in October, and she already understands that it’s unlikely that we’ll proceed with our cooking party plan. She has requested a backyard mini celebration with immediate family, like the ones we did for my parents and my niece’s summer birthdays.
Hats off to the class of 2020.
I was initially sad when my son’s preschool graduation became a Zoom event. However, it allowed both sets of grandparents to participate safely, and he felt proud of his accomplishments. I’ve realized that some cool balloons, a meaningful gift, and a delicious treat are all my kids need to celebrate a milestone.
Our local high school found several ways to honor the graduating class in May, including a drive-in graduation ceremony and a car parade. It may not be what seniors expected, but it was memorable, nonetheless.
Welcome to the world, baby.
One of my good friends had her second child in April, not long after we started a weekly Thursday night Zoom tradition with a few other girlfriends. She didn’t want to miss our Zoom the night after giving birth, so we got to meet her new bundle of joy while they were still in the hospital (and hear about how insane it was having a baby during a pandemic). Virtually celebrating the birth of her son was a new approach and one I’ll always remember.
With some creativity and flexibility, life’s milestones can be celebrated perfectly…well, pandemic-perfectly.