The Big Quarantine – Friday, April 24, 2020.
The Day in What’s Waking Me Up: I’m usually a great sleeper, but the Covid is rousing me awake in ways I’m not used to. My non-Covid dreams tend to be based in reality and it wasn’t that long ago I was dreaming about excel spreadsheets. My current dreams have me really over-processing hand washing and social distancing into my subconscious. In last night’s dream, I was naked, crouched down in a suburban lawn (maybe my Mom’s), washing my hands in a puddle. I don’t remember how I got there. Someone is walking toward me. I can’t see them well because the sun is so bright but I know I’m in danger. Of course I’m in danger. Where the hell is my face mask in this dream? Anyway, fell right back to sleep. All good.
The Day in Civic Duty: Of course every day we’re all doing our civic duty by sheltering in place. But today I mailed in my perfectly legitimate Hamilton County ballot. I’m an issues only voter in primaries, but I’m keeping my voting muscles well-oiled for the November election which promises to be another doozy! In other civic duty news, I’m starting to get used to the fact that whenever I leave my apartment for even the shortest amount of time (like to drop off a piece of mail or my trash downstairs), upon my return I have to wash my hands like I’m scrubbing for surgery. This is the kind of behavior I would have once criticized as harmfully germaphobic, and yet, here I am.
The Day in Job Searching: Just before Covid confinement, I quit my job in what turned out to be a poorly timed fit of self righteousness. Of course, I had a plan. And, of course, I didn’t plan it anything like it’s going now. I just didn’t want to work in a conventional office setting like I’ve been doing my whole life for just a couple months. A classic case of be careful what you wish for.
The next several months are obviously in flux for everyone, but I have started the “real job” job search. I’m on it sooner rather than later because suddenly 26 million of my close friends are now vying for stable work, too. The jobs sites are posting plenty of new positions and they seem to indicate hiring is actually happening. But like everything else in the Covid era, the ground is moving beneath my feet.
I’ve applied for many jobs, but for about a dozen of those applications I received an email a few days after applying that said the company had decided to put the position on hold. Can you imagine the disarray of companies and the impact on their current workers as they open and close positions? Except for the positive of the paycheck, work sounds horrible right now. Well, worse than normal.
Also, I would be remiss if I didn’t add I would be an awesome addition to your team. My organization and interpersonal skills are well-recognized. Screw those other 25,999,999 people. I’m your woman!
The Day in Your Car Warranty Has Expired: Most of us have essentially stopped driving but the robo calls telling you that your car warranty has expired have not stopped. During the pandemic though, it appears that the calls are coming from personal phones. Instead of “potential spam” or “unknown caller” my phone displays a person’s name. When you’re job searching you kind of have to pick up those calls. I can still hang up right away but I always feel they got me.
The Day in Dinner Prep: I’m at my self imposed blog word-limit for today, but tomorrow you can be sure I’m going to touch on tonight’s dinner. I’m working on that now. One of the first steps is washing one dollar’s worth of pennies. That’s your hint. It’s gonna be a good one.
The Day in Calming Down: (from my Facebook page)
Wow folks. Can you believe how long we’ve been confined? Even the most mentally sound amongst us are having feelings of depression, anxiety, anger, and/or grief. Obviously.
Constant covid talk will do that. The bad news is deafening but we have to balance that news with positive thoughts.
We must mourn our dead, of course, but we must celebrate survivors and the grace and strength of workers and care-givers who have kept our slowed down lives moving. We must be aware of the financial strains and life changes Covid has thrust upon us and realize life going forward will be different. We must have faith and trust that as we go down that new path, we’ll do it together. It’s going to be okay.
We’re already working together. We stay at home not because most of us are personally in danger, but because all of us working together can help the greater good. It’s tough to keep that in mind, but we should say it out loud every day.
How do we keep doing all that heavy emotional lifting without feeling so negative? Well, we’ve made it this far so let’s keep it going! If you haven’t already, I urge you to try to limit your news intake and change your Facebook settings to take a break from friends sharing memes and posts that seem negative to you.
Listen to some music and sing the words (under your breath or as loud as you can!) Dancing is highly recommended. Eat slower. Drink more water. Take a second nap. Laugh at your farts and belches. Just laugh or at least giggle. Draw pictures. Embrace your quirks. Be you!
It’s cool if you don’t want to do a Zoom happy hour. Those video chats can be as draining as they are uplifting. If you’re feeling up to it call a friend who you find easy to talk to. If you don’t feel like chatting write a letter.
Look at yourself in the mirror and give yourself a pep talk. Let me start it for you: “Hey, you’re pretty awesome. Glad you’re here. Let’s grab a snack!”
It’s impossible to wipe away the cloud of Covid that is covering the world, but let’s give ourselves a damn break at least a couple times throughout the day. I know, the future is uncertain, but as the hippies used to say: Sha-la-la-la-la-la, live for today.