I’ve had some of the most profound conversations of my life during this pandemic. My phone has been my lifeline to people who I’ve missed and who mean a lot to me. The nights I’ve stayed up late listening to people and loving them in the middle of crisis mean everything. Those conversations helped me strengthen existing connections and forge new ones. They were a bridge, a balm. They assuaged my loneliness when I was most alone. I’ll never tolerate it again when people say that in-person connections are the only ones that really matter. Those conversations changed my life.—Meg Pillow, author
Every morning, after my son gets on the bus to school, my wife and I take a walk to the local park. We watch geese and ducks swim and feed in the pond, and listen to the song birds sing in the trees. Recently, the geese and ducks have welcomed little goslings and ducklings. I am grateful for the serenity these walks with my wife bring, and the reminders that there are other ways of being, and other cycles of time that exist alongside our human ones.—Austin Gilkeson, author
Steven Genise is an author and editor based in Seattle. He loves reading about all the things you’re grateful for. If you’d like to be included, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or DM him on Twitter @StevenGenise.