My husband and I came home from a mediocre work party one night in the fall of 2009 and spent the next day wondering how it was possible that we were so hung over. It turned out that we had swine flu and we spent the next several weeks quarantined to our tiny apartment watching every sci fi movie I had managed to avoid for the first several years of our relationship. To this day Star Wars still makes me feel nauseous.
During this same year, my Mom’s cancer had recurred and she was going through treatment again, and my older sister had had her first baby. I couldn’t see either of them for over a month and it was the worst.