This is week 3 of social distancing. School in San Jose, California let out indefinitely 20 days ago due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. It seems like a lifetime ago. We have a newly established homeschooling routine in place for our 8-year-old and are connecting daily with his teacher online. It is working alright so far – mostly good moments amongst some occasional fits. There is a combined feeling of isolation and one of connectedness as we touch base with our family and friends both near and far through text, Facetime and Zoom. It’s an odd sensation being in such close proximity to our neighbors and so many other people in such a large, sprawling city while at the same time being so isolated.
Besides homeschooling, it’s hard to know what do with myself and my son during these times. I was completely out of sorts last Saturday and not in my best mood. It was a rainy day in San Jose and I really felt the need to get out of the house and go somewhere but I realized there was absolutely nowhere for me to go. I did some artwork in my sketchbook shortly after shelter in place was instigated to express my distressful feelings.
I check Facebook throughout the day to see the range of what people are doing. Some people appear to have a pretty good handle on things which makes me feel both comforted and insecure about what I’m doing. Limiting my time on Facebook is always a good idea, however, it can sometimes give reality checks as I glimpse into other people’s lives: like learning that some people are in the midst of other real crisis in the midst of this corona virus stuff; or that other people’s home situations where they are forced to hunker down are less than ideal.
To keep myself busy in my own home I clean the house (it’s never been cleaner); I take some walks or runs in the neighborhood (keeping my distance of course); I meditate daily; I garden and do lots of projects around the house. I bought fabric before we were home bound and made all new curtains for our house, a project I’d been putting off for ages, thanks to a friend who lent me a sewing machine. After a couple of online tutorials and many hours spent on the machine can proudly say I now know how to operate a sewing machine. I even managed to give my son a couple of homeschool lessons on sewing before returning the machine. Score!
It’s interesting how each state has responded so differently to this virus. My brother lives in Ohio and has been in lockdown slightly longer than we have. My sister and family are up north of Seattle on Whidbey Island. Her kids were out of school and hunkering down at home awhile ago due to Seattle being one of the first American cities hit by the coronavirus. She is worried what might happen to them if the virus hits hard on the island. Will it be difficult for them to get services? My parents currently left Florida since it had way less restrictions than other states. Thankfully they are now safe in Ohio sheltering in place there. I’m glad they are taking precautions and are healthy at least for now.
My spring allergies are about to hit their peak. The flowering mock orange tree right outside my house – my nemesis – is about to bloom and once that begins I suffer with pretty severe hay fever which sometimes brings on asthma. I do worry about myself getting the virus during this time but I know compared to others I am not supposedly high risk for it, but who knows with such an unknown, “slippery” virus. I worry too about my son who also gets bad asthma with bad colds. But are kids getting the coronavirus now as it changes all the time? Who knows! All these crazy uncertain times.
At any rate, although we are separate my friends and family, know that you are ALL close to my heart and just a text, a Facebook comment, or a Zoom call away 🙂 I’ll end todays post with my meditation mantra for the day:
May we be safe.
May we be peaceful.
May we be kind to ourselves.
May we accept our lives as they are.