Tuesday, April 21, 2020
Welcome back, anxiety.
I remember being really freaked out in early March before states issued safer at home orders because I knew that we needed to be sheltering in place in our homes and practicing social distancing, but it didn't seem like news outlets had quite gotten it together yet and were still covering the both-sides-ism fiasco re:prepping.
When governors got it together, and we started staying home, I felt my anxiety lessen by about a million percent, even when Dorothy and Cooper and I got sick. And since we have been sheltering in place? I have felt pretty OK.
Part of this is just the insane privilege of having enough-- enough of all of the things, and I am smart enough to understand that my reality is not everyone's. I understand that of the 22 million people who are unemployed, LOTS AND LOTS of them are getting ZERO help from the government as states scramble to use outdated systems to serve the flood of people applying for benefits. I understand that not everyone who is still working is getting the same salary they had before, that not every job can be worked from home, that people really are desperate to get to back to work.
But I am still more anxious than I have been since before we stayed home now that the total insanity about opening up for business before we're healthy has started to gain momentum. Who is going to feel comfortable going to restaurants or movie theaters or gyms right now? How is shopping in my favorite boutique or spending all afternoon in my favorite coffee shop ever going to be a thing that happens before we have a vaccine? Who has a bunch of extra income to toss back into the economy right now when we're not even sure when we'll hit the bottom?
And the mixed messages from protesters! They are anti-mask! Anti-vax! Neither of these sentiments make me feel good about going out in public around people again.
I took the kids for a walk on campus to sit on a blanket by the lake and play cards yesterday, We saw people, but we never came within 6 feet of anyone, and the sidewalks were less crowded than our neighborhood after dinner.
Still, we were all jumpy when we saw people walking in our line of sight-- which is clearly a sign that we need to get out more-- and even though we wore masks, no one else did (there were a few, but we were in the minority).
All of this is to say that I don't think there's anything to do but stay home, and I am so worried that states will open before it's safe and hurt all of us, leading to even more economic ruin than we are experiencing right now.
How are you managing your anxiety these days? I am just eating a lot and yelling at my loved ones.
Family walk after dinner. Look how excited Cooper was.