Introverts – rejoice! The time is here where your need for having space away from others will be fully validated. All you Extroverts, though, might not be so lucky. Global quarantining has become a virus in itself, and for many of us – life without social interaction is hard concept to grasp.
I, for one, have found some relief in the though of staying at home as much as possible, but I also struggle with the idea of not getting to spend time with friends and family in person. We are all susceptible to the inevitable feelings of cabin fever that is to come in the next few weeks.
While social media may be partly to blame for the current feelings of fear and panic, stats and numbers would still be broadcast in some way – even if we didn’t have the internet or television. If death tolls rise globally, all by the hand of an invisible airborne germ, there is valid reason to feel fearful – no matter how the news gets to you.
Pandemonium aside (and yes, please try to push it aside). This is a time now to weed through the worry and find what it is you are grateful for. If you cannot see a loved one in person, feel grateful that they mean something to you that you want to feel their presence. If you cannot go out to see a show, feel gratitude for having music in your life and having other channels to play those tunes. If you cannot go to church or support groups, find them online and be thankful for the internet – which gets a lot of grief, especially from older generations. But I know that there are parents who live far away from their children (my mother is in Texas, my dad is in Washington), and good friends who no longer live down the block from each other, and strangers that haven’t met yet – and because of the internet, we are connected.
I have been reaching out to many friends in the last few weeks, not realizing what was about to happen. But now that it has happened, I find myself in more conversations than usual. Yes, many of them are about Corona, but most of them are just to check in and bridge that gap of distance between us. I’ve had more phone conversations and FaceTimes than I ever used to have. I used to struggle for years with being lonely, but I know better now that it is a two-way street. The feelings of awkwardness aren’t worth not reaching out and checking in with those that matter to you.
Social Distancing will be temporary. But for now, reach out in the way you are able to. And don’t forget to connect with yourself. Journal, dance, read, paint, get out into Mother Nature, stretch (for the love of the universe, stretch!). Solitude has a way of bringing certain things into clarity, as long as you’re able to set aside your dread and just breathe your way into it.
For those that have been affected by the COVID19 business shutdowns and are struggling either with losing your job or having to take care of your children while still working – please check your local community online for more information. In Los Angeles county, there are 40 family resource centers being opened to help those in need of childcare. Some schools are still offering lunch to the kids that need it. If you need help, please reach out – many people are willing to offer help if you just ask.
Stay safe, stay healthy and stay calm… We can do this together!