After It’s All Said and Done

I left the house today. I went out for roughly 20 minutes to help my mom at her other house. On the way home I saw this girl walking on the street. She was wearing a long flowing black skirt, combat boots and a mask, and I thought, damn. She looks like an extra from Mad Max, or some other post-apocalyptic world.

I’m being dramatic, but not really. I’ve talked to several people recently who echoed this general feeling I have of low grade surreality. It’s kind of like we’ve been dropped into a movie. Seeing everyone walking around wearing masks and gloves, the empty shelves in stores, the lines in others. The continuous, almost matter of fact reporting of new corona-virus related deaths.

What really hit me was the text messages calling on any healthcare workers to report in for work. That air raid like sound that accompanied it was like, whoah. This is so real.

Of course, it’s not all bad. If you know where to look, you can find tales of people recovering from COVID-19. They’re full of upbeat advice on which health aides to buy, and which vitamins to take to boost your immune system. All over social media people are busy-ing themselves with Tik Tok challenges and short slice of life comedic moments.

I’ve never seen so many messy buns on the ‘Gram and makeup free faces on webinars. Women I’ve never seen without a full beat are natural beauty-ing it up as they share video conference wig tutorials. See, they’re having to call for help now that access to their glam squads has been cut off.

On a personal note, I think I’ve lost weight. My skin is entirely bump free, and I’m sleeping like a log. I’m also eerily calm. I feel — watchful. Does that make sense? I imagine many of you can relate. I’m moving through my daily business with as many good vibes as I can muster. Grateful I have paying work, and that my family is okay. But I still feel like I’m waiting. I’m not sure for what though.

I take that back. Occasionally I’m waiting for the internet, which has adopted annoying, dialup-like traits in the afternoons.

Slow internet aside, I insist on treating most of the first world worries that nibble at my consciousness like the coronavirus: Please give me six socially distanced feet. Better yet, make it 50. No one here is interested in any foolishness, thank you. We’re too busy trying to live, and prep, and sustain so we can come out the other side of this thing with our wallets and wigs intact.

Unlike many, I’m not bored. I have way too much stuff to do in my house, even when I run through all of my work emails. I give serious side eye when adults say, “I’m bored.”

I immediately start to ask questions: Is your house clean? Are your clothes clean and organized? What about the inside of your car? Is it clean? What about your finances? Is your budget up to date? Did you exercise today? Take your vitamins? If there are too many no’s, I think, you’re not bored. You’re unmotivated, or lazy, take your pick. I occasionally subscribe to both.

But after it’s all said and done, I think the more self-aware of us will be in a better place spiritually, emotionally, and hopefully, physically. I walked more than 16,000 steps yesterday. Haven’t done that in, hmm. Maybe never.

It’s like those articles I’ve been seeing about animals roaming freely in metropolitan areas now that most people are posted up at home. Just as they are capitalizing on this chance at a bother-less freedom, we too have an opportunity —to reassess, consider, think, focus.

Nature has forced us to reclaim some old ways, good ways. Talking to people, being cordial, communication is huge in the age of the coronavirus. I even checked on my handyman earlier today. I don’t check on people unless they’re damn near declared missing. Mr. Bowen is doing fine, by the way.

It’s wild. But I’m in a really good spot. I have the luxury of time free from worry to consider what state I’ll be in when this is all over. I’m blessed because when that time comes, if I continue as I have been, I may actually be better in a lot of ways. My heart thumps for those who can’t say the same.

Stay healthy, y’all.

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