What else can I do but write?

Thursday, April 2, 2020

These, my friends, are trying times. Life is rough here in 2020. The Coronavirus is in full swing – taking people out left and right. We’re stuck at home in hopes of keeping the virus at bay. But healthcare workers are certain that nearly everyone will get it, no matter what precautions we take. We’re being told to stay at home and to only leave for essentials like dog walks and grocery runs. Toilet paper is sold out in nearly every store. Furlough days are being passed out like candy on Halloween.

We’ve got Netflix. We’ve got Zoom. We’ve got #wfh (future self, that means working from home).

Stores are closed. Restaurants are only open for takeout or delivery. Grocery stores – once a beloved place I could spend an hour traversing the aisles and reading labels – have become anxiety inducing experiences. What if the virus is on the carts? What if the cashier has it? What if the store doesn’t have any of the items I need or want? What if I don’t wipe down everything I bring home well enough and I get the virus?

And then if I get the virus, what happens to me? I live alone, besides my very adorable dog. Bruno can’t go to the grocery store. Bruno can’t walk himself. Bruno can’t take care of a sick person.

Thank god for my parents. Maybe I’m not supposed to go back and forth between two towns (because we’re supposed to be sheltering in place, as in ONE place), but the only thing keeping me sane right now (besides my very adorable dog) is the fact that I have people to cook with and go to the grocery store for me, and then I also have my very own home with no humans around.

Many people have taken up new hobbies. Many people are taking daily yoga classes virtually and for free. Many people are bettering themselves with virtual visits to national parks and museums. I am not many people in this instance. I am an anxious, can’t-sleep-through-the-night person who cries at least five times a day. I walk by empty restaurants and tear up because places I enjoyed are closed and people are out of jobs. I look at my very adorable dog and tear up because I’m so grateful to have him for hugs and an excuse to go for walks (at least) four times a day.

Today, I had to let my staff go. My organization can no longer afford to pay them. I may be on the chopping block next, or soon, or someday. Which that not knowing is stressful. I don’t even think my organization can afford to pay me right now, but somehow they are and for that I am grateful.

Another thing helping keeping me on the (in)sane train? Dating. Well, not like dating dating. More like having conversations with random strangers on apps. No phone numbers exchanged. No ability to meet up in real life any time in the foreseeable future. Just chatting with strangers about random things.

Other positives: more time with family (even if it is just virtually), starting a yoga class for my family and friends (even if it is just virtually), reading uplifting books (also virtually), and a rather clean apartment (not virtual at all).

Nearly every podcast I listen to is about the Coronavirus. I wish they weren’t though as they were once a break from reality. Now, I pick and choose the ones that are bound to make me laugh.

The sun was shining today. Bruno and I got in our 10,000 steps. Oh, and I busted out my blog for the first time in a while. I really felt that I needed to start writing this all out because someday when we’re no longer in bizzaro-world, I’ll want to remember this. The good, the bad, the ugly, and the scary.

This is not the end. We’re only in week three of shelter in place. Other countries have been facing this for longer and are maybe, hopefully, coming out on the other side. There were deaths. The economy tanked. But they got through it. And I hope everyone I know does, too.


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