Everyday Life During the Coronavirus Pandemic: Volume I

AC97A114-0AC8-4C2D-A9FF-EA1801CEF9FANow that social distancing has become a “thing” and we are navigating the new normal facing us during this Coronavirus pandemic, I’ve been attempting to make this time productive, keep sane and wherever possible learn from it.

Like most of us, I’m concerned for family and loved ones who are at high risk; my elderly parents, my daughter who is a health care provider and others who are immunocompromised. I’m trying to make sense of all of this, reading tons of articles about how the virus spreads, what the symptoms are and when to get help (and when to stay home). I’m following the call to “shelter at home”.

I’m also trying to keep a semblance of a normal schedule. I exercise at home (now that my gym and group fitness instructor gig is on hold), walk outside when weather permits (we are still in midwestern early Spring mode here in Illinois – which means lots of cold rain and dreary skies), cook, clean, read, work from home, etc.

I am also making it a point to reach out to friends and family to keep up a semblance of social contact without actual physical contact. In this context, having widespread access to social media, online news sources, etc. has become a benefit to our society. While we’ve lamented overuse of social media, lack of one-to-one contact, we are now relying on this technology to keep us in touch. Hopefully, once this is over (and it will eventually be over, I have faith in that), we will have a new found appreciation for a handshake, a hug, a pat the back from a friend or family member without having to wonder “have I infected someone or have I been infected?”

During this time, it’s so important not to panic, give in to anxiety and fears or give up. This is so much easier said than done. I understand anxiety and panic and catastrophizing. I know what it feels like to wake up in the wee hours, with a feeling of dread. I think we all do.

But we can overcome this by reaching out to others in texts, phone calls, emails, video-conferencing, etc.. and letting them know we are here for them and knowing they are here for us. So check in on that friend who is sheltering alone, call your elderly parents, your kids who are working from home in another city or anyone who needs reassurance.

And use this time to create something (draw, write, knit, needlepoint, bake/cook, etc.), learn something new (there are so many free online courses), read a book and have a virtual book club discussion, play a board game, bake muffins or cookies and leave them on someone’s doorstep (keeping that social distancing). Just keep living!

I’ve started up projects that have been stewing for months (decluttering files, closets, drawers), I’m doing tons of laundry – washing everything (I’m strangely addicted to the smell of Persil), and making it a point to use up food that has been languishing in the freezer or back of the pantry (creative cooking at it’s best). My family may not appreciate it, but I’m being practical! I even purchased a caulk repair kit and have big plans to recaulk my shower (results may vary).

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And like many other women, I am lamenting the gray roots that are getting longer as my cherished hair appointment has been delayed. And also wondering how to remove Gel nails (any tips out there?) I realize these concerns are not at all important in the grand scheme of things, but let’s be honest.. most of us are wondering..

Ending on a more serious note, I’d like to remind everyone of a few things we’ve all been hearing about a ton already.. one more time won’t hurt, right? Please don’t hoard TP and groceries. There will be enough. Please be kind to those working at grocery stores, healthcare providers, first responders, etc. they are doing their best. In fact, just please be kind to everyone during this time. And please take social distancing seriously. You will help slow the spread and save lives just by staying home.

We are all in this together.

And if you need a virtual friend during this time, message me! I love to meet new people and am a good listener.

 

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