26 March 2020 — The COVID Diaries: Staying Sane in a Time That’s Not

 

Dear Diary,

It’s been a week since my last trip to the grocery store, and I’m trying to stretch it by one more. So far, we’re good on all the staples.

I’m used to having a house of seven people, but Abby and Chandler left early Sunday morning, 15 March, to go back to Hawaii for the remainder of their last semester of college — such as it is with everything closed and classes online — and even though I very sweetly invited them to return to Oregon so I can control their every move and ensure they’re abiding by both the letter and the spirit of social distancing law, they declined. I can’t imagine why, Diary. It’s a mystery.

Abby’s been kind enough to let me boss them a little, though.

With a house of just five people now, we have plenty of food. More than enough. Oh, we’ve already run through the preferred cereals and the store-bought bread and we’re lower than I’d like on my latest favorite tea — Moroccan Mint with a smidge of honey and half-and-half. But we have ingredients to make things, and I’m trying to actually, truly only go to the store when I need to go — to really minimize exposure as much as possible — even though grocery shopping is an acceptable excuse to get out of the house.

In other words, integrity in this whole process is cramping my style, Diary. If it wasn’t, you know, life and death, I think I’d just go wander the craft supplies aisle or put my germ-infested hands on all the jar candles, opening them one by one to smell them. Change of scenery. A tiny break from the extroverted humans inside my house who need to chatter incessantly at me forcing me to choose whether I shut them down so they go insane or listen patiently so I do. 

But the risk isn’t worth the payoff.

It’s a basic cost/benefit analysis.

Do we have enough to go another week without a store run? Yep. And so we wait.

Even though it’s hard.

Even though waiting is my Worst Thing.

We wait like that’s our job now. Because it is. 

On the bright side, I did find one way to add an out-of-the-house stop to my calendar.

On the down side, my appointment to give blood isn’t scheduled ‘til next week which is about the same time we’ll need groceries. I would’ve liked to spread them out a bit, but, as I keep reminding my sweet Self, this isn’t about you, girlfriend. This is about saving lives. MAKE. 👏🏼 GOOD. 👏🏼  CHOICES. 👏🏼 

Waiting,

 

 

 

P.S. Today we had High Drama — one of the teens learning how to have Appropriate Boundaries and block humans online who are unable to be kind. Ugh. It’s rough. And also an important life skill. We don’t just have Kindness Standards for how we treat others — we also have them for how we allow others to treat us. 

P.P.S. Tonight, we’re gonna eat popcorn and watch movies. Enforcing Appropriate Boundaries is EXHAUSTING. Popcorn + movie = relaxing, regenerating, and being gentle with ourselves. So let it be written. So let it be done. 

P.P.P.S. This is how I feel. 

Howling the song of my people.

ABOUT BETH WOOLSEY I'm a writer. And a mess. And mouthy, brave, and strong. I believe we all belong to each other. I believe in the long way 'round. And I believe, always, in grace in the grime and wonder in the wild of a life lived off course from what was, once, a perfectly good plan.
3 comments
  1. I’m a 50%-er (half extrovert, half introvert) in a household of 100% introverts. For them, this is all business as usual… well, except the Y is closed so the middle aged retired guy can’t spent hours working out there, and the state lands are all closed to the public so the adult sons can’t wander at will. But they are mostly content and I’m *trying* to be. I miss my grandloves and their parents. I miss seeing my friends. I miss being able to make plans. I miss hugging my friends. But if staying home gives them all a chance to survive, then it is worth it.

    Waving to you in the dark!

  2. Thank you for your kind and/or fun words everyday. They are a bit of sunshine, an escape from home for a few minutes. Here in France, the situation is also grim, so we are trying to be very reasonable with our outings. But my brother just had a baby, and knowing we won’t be able to meet the child for at least a month is depressing. But it is necessary so I’m trying to stay in good spirit, you help a lot.

    1. Oh, I’m so sorry you can’t see the baby yet. That’s tough. Sending you love. ❤️

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