Coping During Covid19 Pandemic
Hello, it’s been so long I think I’ve forgotten how to write. I kept thinking I’ll sit down and touch base on what’s new in the EM world, but I feel like I am still trying to wrap my mind around this craziness that’s been happening around the world.
At the end of 2019 I had decided I would spend more time focusing on the “business” part of my business: More process shots, writing regular blogs and even working on a line of jewelry. However, I never got the chance to even get started because my website got hacked and was down for almost 3 months and in the first week of January my Mac hard drive crashed and was un-recoverable. In the middle of all of my own chaos, we were hit with Covid 19!
As some of you might already know, I live in the country in Northern California and my studio is in my home. When we got the orders to shelter in place pretty early on, my youngest daughter and I weren’t really too upset about it. She was actually thrilled to stay at home from all the middle school drama and I was delighted to work without so many interruptions. Just the fact that I didn’t have to run to town constantly driving my daughter to and from school, piano and guitar lessons, volleyball and basketball practices, etc. felt like a relief. Every trip to town is about an hour round trip and I make at least two to three trips each day.
The first week or two we both were actually happy, enjoying ranch life, uninterrupted time in my studio and hanging out together, binging on popcorn and Netflix movies. By the end of week two, I began to sense the swell of a tidal wave, inevitably heading our direction. I started slacking off on studio time, sleeping in later, watching the horrific news way longer than I probably should have, snacking a ton and working out less, missing our friends and family, our social life, etc. Understandable but far from normal, I started feeling depressed. Feeling like a vortex was pulling me down to the abyss. I decided to turn my focus outward to help others. Helping others has always brought me peace and joy in the past, so why wouldn’t it help now?
I started thinking about what I could do and yet still honor the shelter in place orders. Not only what I can do to help my own family, friends and first responders, but also my local business owners and other artists too. Whatever I can do to help even a little, sign me up! The past several weeks of doing small things to bring a little sunshine to bolster others, has also greatly improved my spirit and my studio time as well. So I thought I’d share a few things I came up with that are helping me, just in case they also might help you.
*A simple smile, saying “hello” (especially in times of wearing masks) or simply holding a door for someone is an easy and free way to spread kindness.
*Check on your friends and family, your neighbors, etc. even if it’s just to say “hello” or grab some groceries, especially if you are already going anyway. Anything that might help them or just to let them know you care.
*Buying gift certificates to locally-owned businesses to use later or to gift to someone else. It’s a win-win, helping to keep your local business operating and giving a great gift to someone else.
*Order take out from my favorite local business to help boost them a little. We usually do most of our cooking at home, but now I order take out at least once a week. Another win-win. You don’t have to cook and you help out your community.
*Encourage a friend to be your workout buddy. Check in with each other daily to inspire and encourage some form of exercise. It will make your both smile a little brighter.
*Send a care package to someone you think might need it. I love face and body scrubs infused with essential oils, or really good organic dark chocolate and/or a good bottle of wine always brings a smile to my face.
*And…. remember to take care of yourself too! Try a guided meditation, yoga class (on line of course) or enjoy with a good book, a favorite Netflix binge, a warm bubble bath or enjoy a couple of the above at the same time. My favorite is a taking a bath, while reading a good book and enjoying a glass of wine.
I believe every little touch and every small gesture goes a long way to help ease stress and anxiety, especially when life is so uncertain. If we all just do one thing each day to help our communities, it will only make us stronger on the other side of this crisis!
Be well and don’t forget to Be The Sunshine! You never know who might be needing your special kind of light.