Nothing hit me as hard the past weeks as Bo’s new special.
It’s not particularly funny. It’s painful, actually, to watch Bo’s mental health decline over a year of social isolation, trying to write jokes for an audience of none, publically wrestling with his self-esteem, fully self-aware of it all. The reason it does me so much, the reason those songs made me bawl my goddamn eyes out half a dozen times the past week, is that it both captures and capstones the past sixteen months.
It captures the weird getting-adjusted phase in the beginning. The annoyances of socially distanced life. The time distortion, the feeling of numbness that has been layered over the outside world. The dark months of despair. Grappling with the realization that your pandemic self is so much like your old self, too much like your old self, the self you thought you had left behind. Dealing with the realization that the rest of the world’s problems haven’t gone away. Having to deal with a planet that’s still going to hell, the clock that still marches on. That there’s that not much to say, or joke. And much like the pandemic, the ending feels just around the corner, but it drags on longer than you expect.
I watched this while it was still uncertain when I’d be in line for vaccination. Over here they announce between zero and two birthyears each day that then become eligible to book a vaccination appointment. My guess at the time of watching the special was that they’d do another (random) pause and that I'd get my shot somewhere in July.
_We were overdue, but it’ll be over soon._ That line was maybe the first time I’d allow myself to feel, to accept the end of this pandemic. The deep yearning for it all to be over that I had been bottling up for the past year was finally let loose. The weight of it all lifting ever so slightly up felt like such a relief, such a bittersweet relief considering how hard it has been and continues to be for so many people.
This past Sunday my year was finally up. Instead of waiting another two and a half weeks, we found a slot for next Sunday in a village an hour plus drive away, with the second shot just before our summer holiday. I couldn't be more thankful.