Blessing: silver linings during the “Times of Rona.”
I started this blog post almost a month ago. It’s been a struggle to finish this one up. It’s been hard to focus my thoughts. But just like with everything else we’re faced with right now… I’m gonna push through.
I had a whole list of various topics that inspire and help me feel blessed. Yet I would be remiss and completely obtuse if I ignored and didn’t acknowledge what’s going on around us in the world right now…COVID-19 and how this global pandemic has totally upended life as we know it. Like many of you, I’m stressed. I’m full of anxiety. It’s hard for me to relax. And on top of everything else, I hold my stress in my body, usually in my back and neck, and my body is telling me that I’m at my threshold now. My chiropractor confirmed that I’m really messed up and out of alignment.
The entire situation is further compounded for me personally because my father is in complete disbelief of the situation and thinks everyone (literally everyone in the world) is overreacting. Therefore he’s not taking any necessary precautions to safeguard his own health, let alone the health of others around him. My father moved my grandfather, who has dementia and is 89 years old, down to Texas to live with him about 5 months ago. However, because of my dad’s lackadaisical approach to COVID-19, we took my grandfather into my home and my husband and I are taking care of him for at least two weeks. It’s been straining and difficult to say the least. I think my husband and I end up in a screaming argument at least once a day over something to do with grandpa. It’s exhausting. In some ways, it wasn’t as bad as it could have been but so much more stressful than I imagined.
Then, of course, there’s the “shelter at home” aspect to the whole situation. I’m a person who works from home when I’m not traveling for work. And what I learned in the last 2.5 years working from home is that I’m a little more introverted than I would have initially described myself. Previously, I avoided going to grocery stores. If I went to one social function per month that was a big deal. I’m generally happy being at home with my dog during most days and evenings… and then with my husband on his days off. However, there’s something about NOT having the option to do anything that makes a person go a little stir crazy.
In addition, there are a number of other stressful elements that are affecting us right now… just like with everyone. My husband was furloughed and we’re on one income. Work seems a little uncertain on the best of days, considering my job previously focused on a lot of events. So now we’re all pivoting to a new strategy, new skillset, new way of thinking and all the while trying to prove that we’re still providing value to the company. I’m diabetic and pregnant – and anyone who is familiar with gestational diabetes understands that sometimes you can’t control it no matter what you do with your diet and exercise. Now with the stress of this global pandemic, I feel like my blood sugar is even more erratic than “normal.”
However, despite all of this (and probably a lot more that my overwhelmed mind can’t even think of or process at the moment), there are so many little things that I’m incredibly thankful for… things that would have never happened if not for the pandemic.
- Reversal of some major climate change issues, like clearer skies in LA, Mumbai and China and sea life thriving again
- My neighborhood has suddenly become the friendliest place on earth; everyone says hi, smiles, waves and actually asks you how you’re coping with everything going on
- Quality time with my husband. Prior to the pandemic, I was voicing my concern to my husband that I didn’t want to go through this pregnancy alone and experience all of these new things by myself; I wanted him around more. Now, everyday, it’s like we cherish each other more than the day before and I feel more in love with him now than ever. We’re connecting, truly connecting and it makes my heart so full and happy.
- Incredible fresh homemade meals everyday. I’ve mentioned before that my husband is a chef, right? I feel so lucky at this moment. We sit down for dinner together every night – half the time at our dining room table, which never happened previously. And we have “date night” once a week – we dress up and put on music (instead of the TV) and spend the whole evening just chatting.
- More time outside. Just like everyone, we go a little stir crazy being inside our home so we’re making conscious decisions to get outside more. Long walks, quiet time, hearing the birds chirping in the morning.
- Practicing prenatal yoga three times per week with Lisa Young at Austin Prenatal Yoga. I had previously gone to some classes in person prior to everything but now that I don’t have a commute to class, there’s no reason for me not to practice. If the lockdown ends before I go into labor, I know I will make the necessary time to continue my yoga practice in person. It has been so physically, mentally and spiritually uplifting during these times.
- Morning meditation and prayers. I started meditation as a way to help manage my fasting blood sugar in the morning, meditating before I take the first reading and trying to calm my mind and my body. During the course of my meditations, I found that I wanted to speak to God as well. I think it’s been 20 years since I’ve prayed. I’m finding it peaceful and calming.
Most likely, this will not be the last time I reference the pandemic and the lockdown and it’s continuing effect on us mentally/spiritually/physically. And I acknowledge that my journey through this is not the same as everyone else. I recognize that we have it a little easier than some because of my job and being able to support my family on my income alone during a time like this. Additionally, COVID-19 hasn’t hit close to home for us, our close friends and immediate family – it feels like it’s happening around us but not to us. My heart breaks wide open for those who have experienced more significant impact – whether through the economy, job loss, health and not to mention the front-line workers who are faced with this stress every single day.
However, I would like to leave this last thought out there that someone had posted on Facebook recently. If you’re able to take one breath and one moment, maybe looking at the silver lining will help you and/or others feel more in control and less anxious than before.
What if the universe is trying to get us to slow down? To stop producing. To stay home and let the earth breathe a little without all the extra pollution we cause daily. To take a step back and realize how we really impact earth and one another. That we aren’t as significant or in control as we think we are. A virus can come through and wipe us all out but earth will still be here. We are all connected. Just like we can spread a disease, we can also spread love, kindness and positivity. Use this time for reflection of your contribution and the life you’re living. Slow down and finally hear yourself again. The universe is always speaking to us if we are willing to listen.–Author Unknown, from higherperspectives.com
How are you coping right now?