Last November, as fall crept slowly toward winter, I was holed up in my house staring at a teacher who was holed up in her house trying to teach my kid his multiplication tables. I was defeated, and most likely in desperate need of a shower, as I straddled the line between lethargy and fits of unbridled rage. I felt disconnected from the outside world, and I knew the holidays in whatever unfamiliar form they took would only bring further isolation.

There were glimpses of normality during the bright months of summer – a drive to the South Dakota wilderness, jaunts to the beach, conversations held within the glow of a campfire. By the time fall rolled around, though, many of us had retreated back into our homes to protect those around us, no one knowing how much longer the pandemic would last or how much longer we would.

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