A Different Kind of Summer

We are midway through the year, and what a year 2020 has been so far. We haven’t seen one like it before, and let’s hope the second half of the year brings better things. But each day we are now seeing the world slowly start to open back up. That helps instill hope, I think. Like maybe there’s light at the end of this winding, unpredictable tunnel. And while people are re-entering workplaces, stores are reopening, and beaches are populated again, hopefully safety measures and precautions will help keep people safe. Regardless, it looks like it’s going to be a different kind of summer this year. Though some things will stay the same.

Summer will most likely still bring its hot and humid temperatures for many cities across the country this year. So, staying cool will be key for many living with MS because of its common, heat sensitivity issues it creates. Being mindful of heat intolerance and trying to conserve energy can hopefully help this. Doing things outdoors at times of the day when its cooler, like earlier in the morning or later in the evening when it’s not as warm, can help in avoiding the hottest parts of the day with the strongest sun.

What might look different is summer planning and activities that typically come with this time of year. The pandemic really shook and changed routines and itineraries people would have had for summer, so creative planning and thinking outside the box will be what we see this season. Though beaches and parks have opened, some people may want to avoid crowds and not be in highly congested areas, which is completely understandable. There are things you can do for fun this summer at home and in your comfort zone. Here are just a few ideas:

  • Movie night! Whether inside snuggled up on the couch or watching outdoors using projectors and other devices, watching a good flick with some of your favorite snacks can be always be fun!
  • Camp out. Setting up a camp indoors or outside can be entertaining, and you can do it at different parts of the day, when it’s not as hot outside, or set up camp inside. And with or without little ones, it might be fun to change up your scenery and do some camping-like activities. Tell stories, make some s’mores, or listen to music!
  • Play some games! Board games, playing cards, trivia games—they can all be a hoot! Play with others in your household or virtually with others using different technology platforms.
  • Dine alfresco. Dining outdoors (when it’s not too hot) can be fun! If you have the space for it, change up your dining environment and pretend like you’re eating at an outdoor restaurant. Some people are even dining out in their driveways and having dinner “with” friends and neighbors while still socially distancing!

While things look very different in the world nowadays, finding joy in the little things and sharing gratitude for what we have and who we are, isn’t changing. We’re going to be stronger as a result of this because each day we’re building upon our resilience and strengths. Enjoy the season and all the possibilities it can bring, and stay cool.

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