Quarterly Portrait: This Old Bucket Hat

The last three months have been particularly hard:

In January I attended a funeral for one of my cousins who passed away in December, we watched as our then President stoked an insurrection at our capitol, and the third wave of covid-19 continued to wash over the country. In February Texas endured an absolutely insane winter storm that had all of us struggling for a week and then for weeks after as our supply chain caught up (I went a full month in between full grocery orders).

I’m tired.

A year of persistent stress and uncertainty has taken its toll. Every day bleeds into the next, every routine has become old, every bit of forced entertainment has grown old. Even the clothes that I wear are exhausted.

I bought this bucket hat years ago as an option for long hikes and long runs. I wore it sparingly before the pandemic. These days, I wear it every single day, most often on walks as respite from being hunched over my laptop at my desk.

This bucket hat has played more of a role in my day to day routine than I ever intended, as have so many other aspects of daily life. It has become one of many personal symbols of this era for me. I wear this bucket hat way too often because I’m not going anywhere where the hat might be out of place anytime soon.

But there is hope that things will get easier. And when it does maybe, just maybe, I’ll be able to give myself and this old bucket hat a bit of a break.

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