I’m tired from all that’s going on right now. (Fatigue is how fellow WP blogger Stephen Black put it.) So, I’m stopping along the way. I have come to a resting space on the side of my path and I’m going to sit here for a while. I’ll sit, rest and reflect.
My journey (and this blog) was supposed to be about exploring what the second half of life looks like. All was going well until the pandemic hit. In the five months since then I’ve been traveling in circles from fear to anxiety to boredom and back. While the country has largely reopened, I’ve been spinning in my own high risk Phase I. So, I’m going to stop. I’ve been so busy worrying about everything (including my sanity) that I haven’t thought to use my confinement to consider how substantially life is impacted by the coronavirus. I’m going to quiet myself and contemplate. It’ll be my Phase II. What better time to examine my motivations, convictions and intentions than now?
Am I seeing everything differently now than I did pre-pandemic; my community, my relationships, myself?
Is my fear of death from COVID-19 overblown because of the trauma I’ve experienced from losing dear ones to disease?
Does that fear run counter to my belief system?
Did I appreciate my pre-pandemic life by fully participating or was I mostly observing as I’m forced to do now?
Will I act more intentionally within our global community after this time of solitude, once a vaccine is developed and I move along again?
I’ll sit here with these questions for a while. I don’t need immediate answers. It’s enough for me to ask and think about them. I’m grateful that I can! The effect to this blog will probably be less humor and some posts might be reflective fiction, poetry or entries from my gratitude journal. I’m hoping that sitting with challenging questions might provide some spiritual growth and maturity. I wonder what Phase III will look like.
Like a lot of folks, I’m sheltering in place (in the house 24/7). I’m in a vulnerable group, over 60 (yeah, I admit it) and have an underlying health issue. So, I have all this time on my hands. I thought I’d spend it thinking deep thoughts and writing through the difficult situation I referred to in my last post. I also thought I might finally finish the revisions of my novel. I was already retired before the quarantine so I can sit in my comfortable home every day without negative consequences like not being able to eat or pay bills. But I’m not thinking at all. I flit from writing, reading, cooking, housework, paperwork…but I can’t focus on anything because I’m not thinking. About the only thing I seem to be able to do consistently is eat.
From November (NaNoWriMo) through to February I kept track of how much I was writing, reading about writing and learning about writing. I’m not doing that now. I’m not in the moment with anything. When I’m not mindlessly moving from distraction to distraction, I stare out the window without thinking. I have the TV on with the sound muted. Ordinarily, I would walk in nature to center myself. I’d like to go for a walk but, nope, can’t think about doing that either. I’m too afraid of who I’ll meet along the way.
Fortunately, I’ve talked to friends and family who feel the same way and I realize that my inability to concentrate is due to fear and anxiety, as is theirs. And that realization makes me angry. The pandemic scares me more than the scammer did. Obviously, lots of us feel the same way. Almost all the bloggers I follow here on WP have posted about the coronavirus. So, I’m frightened, anxious AND angry. On top of everything is the fact that I said I wouldn’t blog about the coronavirus or its effects but here I am…because I can’t think about anything else. I have no idea what else to talk about.
Stay well and healthy everyone. My prayers are for you all and your families.