Ron Hodges was born in Kansas City, MO, and now lives in Palo Alto. He is a chemist, but in his free time, he likes to sing in choirs (like St. Mark’s!). His favorite music is by J.S. Bach.
In these months of lockdown in response to the pandemic, like most everyone I experienced loss: loss of singing in church and community choirs, cancellation of tutoring at a middle school, and loss of gathering in person at St. Mark’s. A few weeks into the lockdown I lost a close friend from my college days to complications from CoVid-19. We had kept in close contact through the years, even taking five trips together, the last one to Europe. Although living in Brooklyn, he was a diehard Giants fan, and I recorded games to send to him (if they won). After his death I went into a four-month tailspin of lack of sleep, anxiety, and depression.
During this difficult time the phone calls from many St. Mark’s friends checking up on me were a source of encouragement and hope. In a way, the switch to streamed services was a blessing as I might have had difficulty summoning the effort to attend in person. The weekday evening Zoom Compline services brought me into contact with some others who could empathize with me.
A set of medications prescribed by a specialist in geriatric (yes, I can’t deny that I fit the category) mental health has restored my equilibrium, but I will always value the supportive community that is St. Mark’s. It is a privilege to contribute to keep the lights on, the staff paid, and outreach and in-reach supported.