Summer Solstice


If only there were a sunscreen to protect you (and me) from all the blue light absorbed into our bodies and brains each day.

I would slather it on thick as frosting.

I’m writing this online while I listen to you and your friends play–each of you in separate houses with headsets on. You guys are a squad, and you’re looking for people to, let’s face it, kill.

At least it’s kind of social, I rationalize. At least you’re talking while you kill people.

Meanwhile, I’m typing stuff that maybe someone will read if I let them.

You guys are laughing at least, connecting. I should stop typing and make you take your headset off and we should go outside. It rained earlier and the grass is still wet. The light is perfect. It’s like one of those Instagram pictures people hashtag “no filter.”

But what would we talk about? It would be so quiet. We might have to come up with something to say. We might find ourselves boring. And there are so many ways to avoid that awkwardness. Me at my computer, you and your headset.

Which is how we got ourselves into this situation in the first place.

You walked in as I was writing this and I let you read it over my shoulder.

My words made you sniffle a little laugh at first. Then in the end you felt like I must hate what you love and that made you mad. I tried to explain myself. It’s not you, it’s me. That old line. I don’t hate what you love. I feel guilty. There is a chorus of moms like a Greek play in my head, shaming me for letting you check out in this way. For not always giving you the perfect childhood that I dreamed up from books and movies. I feel guilty for being lazy and checking out on my own screens too much. For me it’s not about the kills. It’s about the likes. But we are the same. Only I should be better. I should be all the things I want you to be.

The summer solstice is Thursday. Thursday there will be the most light-filled minutes there will be all year. Let’s fill each of those minutes like a bucket, with real things, things that aren’t stitched together with code. Let’s walk to the bakery and take the dog. Let’s make lemonade from actual lemons.