A friend of mine texted me Friday just to check in and see how I’ve been “coping” being quarantined. In fact he specifically asked me if I’ve been going crazy having to be inside or if I was out and about. It was funny to me because like my last post reflected – I’ve definitely not been doing the latter. But it seems like I’m in the minority with that (and I don’t mean all these people out here having parties and what not). If I’m being honest, and it feels like I’m breaking a code or something to say this, I’ve been fine. I’m usually a social butterfly and like to keep an active social calendar. But the truth is that in some ways I like parts of this new slowed-down routine that that the quarantine has produced for me (emphasis on “parts” and the “for me”) part.
Now let me be clear – I am by no means happy about the fact that there is a virus out here that is killing people and in damaging the lungs of those who manage to survive. I hate the fact that there are so many people whose livelihood is in peril and don’t know where their next check is coming from. All of it actually terrifies me when I think about it for too long. Those parts are terrible. And yes, I am longing for the days of being able to travel again, to go places and not be hyper aware of how close someone is standing to me, to not have to wear a damn mask anytime I’m in public, and to socialize and see people. And physical contact – man listen. Hell, that’s likely going to be a post on it’s own because being single during this thing can feel ROUGH sometimes, lol.
So we’re clear – this shit is is crazy and is surreal in the worst way.
But on the flip side, as I try to look at the positives, I think that the way that we, as a society, have had to slow down and make meaningful connections with each other, has been nice. I’ve liked the quiet. I’ve REALLY liked not having to go to work in person. In fact as somebody who prefers to work from home and has really questioned my future in my profession, this work from home mandate has been a big part of the silver lining.
A few weeks ago (honestly I’m losing track of time these days) when I had therapy I mentioned this question. I was like “is there something wrong with me that I am doing okay when so many people are stir-crazy, antsy, and anxious?” I know myself and my anxiety can already be at a 12 out of a scale of 1 to 10. But one thing that my therapist said was that I’m not alone in how I feel. She also posed the question of if the intentionality we’ve been seeing with communicating and connecting – in terms of making time to plan virtual events with family and friends, having actual phone calls and FaceTimes and not just texting family and friends, taking time to self-care and do activities we enjoy at home, etc. – will continue. She pointed out that before this quarantine we would have made excuses to put these things off, but now that we’re forced to be still, connecting has come to the forefront. Even more, she gave me food for thought by asking me how I will move differently when this time is done. Will the lessons I, and others, are learning carry on? Will the motivation continue?
Speaking for myself, a lot of the things that I’ve been doing like taking dance classes, stretching everyday, going on walks, meditating, writing more, and cooking more- those are definitely things that I know I want to continue to do. One jewel about this time is how I’ve really reconnected with my passion for music. While most people I know have binge-watched almost everything there is to see on the streaming platforms, I’m still behind because most nights I’m on either 9th Wonder or D-Nice’s IG Live vibing out and getting my entire life. In general, the music, the art, and the way people are sharing their talents on IG has kept me in good spirits with something to look forward to while inspiring me at the same time. I mean, yes the constant IG Lives that everyone and their Mama has created can feel like a bit much. And yes it seems like everyone in the world – even more than I thought pre-Corona – has podcast aspirations which they’ve decided to launch during this time. But on the flip side, seeing people just sharing their passion because it’s something they love to do is awesome and motivating.
But yeah…over here I’m doing fine (other than the single stuff). I don’t feel pressured to take advantage of this time, but I’m naturally doing that anyway since my life is usually filled with things that I have to do but don’t care about (i.e. extra work shit). Honestly, it is making me rethink a lot about my life, which is a post for another day. But I can say that like my therapist hit on, being more intentional about connecting with my loved ones, engaging in things I’m passionate about, and seeking motivation in other places will be something I have to prioritize as we move forward.