As in the middle of the mindfulness month the Corona virus started to spread here, it felt like a horror movie happening in real-life. Taking care of myself never felt more essential.
With my family at home it was harder, I felt I had to take care of them. Guide my son who was in total shock when his school closed. That tall teen never felt so small to me.
My husband who usually runs around in research telling others what to do was confused at how his group could stay in touch with each other and how his precious research programs could go on. I felt I needed to talk him through ideas.
That first day of social distancing we talked and talked about what was good: to stay occupied, be gentle with yourself, talk and give each other breathing room.
And also what was not a good idea: get scared and/ or stressed too much, stay on the phone for enormous amounts of time, crumble in your own world.
Thing settled down a bit as online school started and every researcher was connected and given a task.
In our spare time we found ways to keep busy through walking and playing with the dog, puzzles, games, connect with family and friends, extra IMAlive shifts, exercise challenges (juggling balls!), cleaning out rooms, talking and Netflix.
Stress was really something that I wanted to avoid as much as possible but considering half of our country was taking the virus spread seriously and the other half was completely ignoring it, it made a thing like grocery shopping a true challenge in keeping my cool.
After the first time shopping I was totally overwhelmed and scared and stressed out. It took me a few days to get back on track. I had trouble sleeping and was totally ignoring everything that usually keeps me healthy.
A text from my neighbour turned my focus around, they are both nurses and I wanted to let them know I appreciated them.
Thinking about them handling patients made me see perspective. They are working hard doing what they can. I really need to do what I can to stay healthy, mentally and physically. So I talked about all my worries, picked up my yoga again, my books, dove in a new box filled with dust and old memories, and put the news and the phone aside and on a limit. Slowly I felt a bit better.
I’m still feeling mixed emotions and I know the stress is just around the corner. It is an unusual weird and stressful situation. But I also know it doesn’t help to let it take over my life. The small things really do help and as long as I use these tools it will help me to put one foot in front of the other.