Making Connections Despite the Corona Virus Crisis
I’m not ashamed to admit that this whole stay home, stay safe order hasn’t changed too much for me. For one thing I am a Pisces, so I can easily slip into a dreamy state of mind and entertain myself for hours at a time. Add being an introvert to that, and I possess the secret code to thrive despite social distancing mandates because I enjoy my own company and welcome the idea of being able to stay home and create my own schedule. Of course, there are many things that I have had to adjust to such as not being able to see my family and friends, go to work, or do as I please with my free time but it hasn’t broken me…yet. Like most of us, days are blending together and some are more emotional than others. However, up to this point I have been able to pay my bills and haven’t suffered the loss of a loved one. My heart goes out to all those who have not fared so well during this time.
Search for Meaning
As a spiritual person, I strive to see the meaning in everything especially when it causes unrest and imbalance. Instead of grumbling about all the negative, I look for the good and have found many things to be grateful for. Staying home has given me the opportunity to spend time with my cats, one of which is elderly and fading due to kidney disease. Not knowing how much time he has left, every day home with him and my others is a precious gift.
Another benefit of being deemed a non-essential employee (I disagree) is that I have been able to devote a considerable amount of time toward research and making graphics for my business page on Facebook. I am normally too tired by the end of the work day to get involved in anything time consuming or requiring mental acuity. Being home has granted me the luxury of time to focus on things I am passionate about pursuing. Aside from investing in my business, it has also reinvigorated my desire to pick up my guitar again and attempt teaching myself how to play better. All these things are good, very good.
Damsel in Distress
To appreciate the good in anything, it is also important to acknowledge the bad. Without one, there is no way to measure the other. It’s just a fact of life. I “felt” that this morning when I was at the grocery store. Never have I had to worry about which way I was traveling down an aisle or where to position myself to check out. The green and red arrows taped to the floor dictating what direction I was to proceed elicited a bit of rebellion in me. I’m one of those zig-zaggy shoppers buzzing around here, there, and everywhere as I try to remember what I wrote on the shopping list I left at home. Today there were rules, and I didn’t like it. I know you’re not supposed to drink and drive because it’s not safe, yet now I was supposed to think and drive at the grocery store and it wasn’t graceful. If I was taking a driving test at DMV, I surely would have failed considering I went down one-way aisles the wrong way and backed myself down others just to avoid having to skip aisles to be facing the right direction. In my mind, I was already planning my damsel in distress speech in case I got pulled over by the Corona police. Sporting my gray hair they would no doubt have guessed me much older than I am and taken pity on me. In event that wasn’t enough, I was prepared to do what all wise women do when faced with desperate measures – cry!
Face Mask Misery
Another thing I realized is that wearing a mask gives me anxiety. I used to wear one when I worked in the medical field, but today I felt claustrophobic and wanted to rip it off my face. God bless those who must wear one all day long. I honestly don’t think I’d be a very nice person to be around by the end of the day if I had to wear one for hours on end. It also occurred to me that wearing a mask covered up my ability to have non-verbal connections with people. I always smile at people who are walking by me. I think it’s important to notice people seeing that so many of us feel like we are invisible in the world. Many times, I get ignored but for the person who lights up with a smile in return, I feel like we made each other’s day a little brighter. Habits aren’t broken just because rules are made and today’s shopping trip was no different. I still smiled at each person I walked by being mindful to exercise social distancing rules. Although I couldn’t connect like I usually do, I hope they saw the twinkle in my eyes and my smile behind the mask. It’s good to be connected, very good.
Times are tough for all us right now. We are each handling it in our own way and trying to figure out how we are going to survive. Nobody knows what “normal” is going to look like once this is over. I suspect we have a long road of uncertainty ahead of us and until we get the green light to jump back into life, I pray we are all a bit kinder to ourselves and others as we move through this pandemic together. Always remember that isolation doesn’t mean you must be alone. In this age of technology, there are many ways to reach out and touch someone. Be creative and look for the good. I promise you, it’s out there.