This isn’t the topic I’d planned to write about for March, but then again, I’m not sure anyone could have planned for we’re all dealing with right now. It feels like we’ve been transplanted into some kind of sci-fi movie or maybe a dystopian novel, neither of which we ever wanted to find ourselves in. But, nevertheless, here we are. Time to pull up our big people panties and deal with COVID-19 and quarantine.
I’ll admit that my current schedule isn’t all that different from my summer schedule (when the kids are home all day) because A.) I work from home anyway, and B.) I tend to be a homebody even when I’m not working. I usually schedule my grocery and errand outings in order to get as much done as I possibly can at once–that’s just something I’ve learned to do since we live in the boonies and everything’s at least a 20 or 30 minute drive. But wanting to stay at home much of the time feels so different than having to stay home. I’m sure everyone can relate. I miss getting to attend my bi-monthly writer meetings. I miss going to my kids’ sporting practice and events. And I miss having actual face-to-face conversations with people who aren’t my immediate family.
But even amidst all the worry and unease right now, I’ve come to appreciate the simplicity of a slowed-down life–spending quality time with my kids, cooking meals with whatever ingredients we have on hand, being outdoors as much as I can. And without all the driving I normally do and the activities we have nearly every week day evening, I actually have time to clean and work on some projects that I’ve been putting off for a long while. So I can’t say that’s a bad thing.
Everyone is likely coping with quarantine in their own way–and no one’s way is necessarily better than anyone else’s (unless you’re simply ignoring social distancing–because that’s just selfish and wrong, in my opinion. . .) As for me, I feel the need to maintain some semblance of a normal schedule. So that means homeschooling my kids for several hours in the mornings and keeping a chore list for them to complete each day. Having them working and focused for at least part of the day allows me to be able to maintain some focus on my freelance work and novel edits. Plus, I think staying busy helps to stave off some of the anxiety, too.
I feel extremely fortunate to live where I do right now. Living in the country has its downsides sometimes, but I have to say it’s pretty perfect for quarantine. I can take walks in my front pasture each day (when it’s not pouring, at least!) and be outside as much as my heart desires, never having to worry about sharing germs.
Spring is making its welcome appearance, and aside from Oklahoma’s temperamental and sometimes dangerous weather, it’s honestly my favorite time of year. I love seeing the daily changes in our budding trees and the abundance of insects (except for flies. I hate flies). And believe or not, I’m looking forward to getting on our mower when the yard dries up a bit. We started our garden a little earlier than usual this year, and my husband, being the overachiever he is, is currently finishing up a new system of raised beds. Let’s just hope we can keep up with it all over the summer. . .
I hope that you, too, are learning to find the silver linings arising from this unique situation. I know when this is all over, we’ll all have a new appreciation for many things that we may have taken for granted before. Going out to eat. Watching a movie in a crowded theater. Spending time with friends. Won’t it be amazing when we can do those things again? Things are confusing and scary and heartbreaking right now, but we must keep in mind that this, too, shall pass. And I truly believe we’ll come out better for it on the flip side. See you there soon. XOXO
Oh, and in case you were wondering, great news: the never-ending project is (almost) finished! All the wood floors upstairs have been installed. We just need to finish the stairs. 🙂