The other night I was bingeing Disney+ and I came across “The Sound of Music.” It’d been years since I last watched it. I remember it being a fun musical with fun songs for kids and a few boring ones for adults. (I mean, “Climb Every Mountain” was not for kids). But watching it now, as an adult, all I could think about is how romantic it is. Sure, like a lot of movies, there are a few parts that haven’t aged well, but the movie is a romance and I fell hard for it.
I went to work and told my awesome co-workers, and one of them said to me, “I’ve never seen it. I’ve never even heard of it.”
My brain exploded out of my skull.
As I was picking up the pieces of gray matter and disinfecting them, I discovered three fundamental truths at the exact same time.
No. 1: I’m older than I thought.
No. 2: I fear that “The Sound of Music” has been lost to an entire generation.
No. 3: I can’t remember what I was going to say about No. 3, which brings me to my main point. (See, my editor, how I buried the lede?)
The long and short of it is, I am a COVID long-hauler. You can look it up, because it’s kind of everywhere right now. I had the coronavirus and I have symptoms that just won’t go away, including brain fog.
Only a few friends know this about me, but it’s taken over so much of my life that it became hard to write a column about myself that didn’t include this massive thing.
So, I decided to pull a Fraulein Maria and focus on the good stuff. Please read this to the tune of “My Favorite Things.” (And if you don’t know that tune then go. Watch. “The Sound of Music”!)
A steamer with caramel and soft puppy paws
Writing and reading and hearing applause
Homegrown tomatoes and Irish Claddagh rings,
These are a few of my favorite things.
(And now I dance and make some clothes out of drapery for a few bars.)
The sound of my keyboard when I’m really going
The first lilac blooming and the first sign of snowing
Well, never mind about the first sign of snow,
Because shoveling sucks and my teenager is lazy
(I dances as if those last two lines really do rhyme.)
But, when the BRAIN FOGS
When the fever spikes
When I’m feeling crappy
I try to remember my favorite things,
And then I don’t feeeeeeeeeel so crappy.
(You thought I was going to take the easy way out and rhyme “crappy” with “happy,” right?)
Anyway, my fellow long-haulers (and there are a ton of them), I feel you. From the blank stares we receive as we tell our family we’re going to the hospital for the fifth time in three months (that’s true) or the well-intended but old “Just cheer up!” and “Here, drink this tea, it works miracles,” and “I dunno, Clorox?” when you say something like, “What do you want to drink,” after all of that…
We’re forgetting words like egregious and penultimate and house and cat.
And we’re… supporting each other,
And what was I saying?
Oh yeah. Did I mention brain fog?
Brodi Ashton is a New York Times best-selling author who lives in the Salt Lake City area. She’s also an occasional columnist for The Salt Lake Tribune.