Living in unusual times

We are definitely living in unusual times. We’ve watched as COVID-19 swept across the globe and now it’s reached our shores. I’m tempted to sit at my laptop hour after hour watching and reading updates. Things are happening so fast! Late Sunday, it was announced that schools across our province were closing. Yesterday, the province declared a state of emergency and non essential services began to shut down. Recreational facilities, museums, libraries, art galleries, community centres, children’s play centres, casinos… all closed until further notice. Gatherings of more than 50 people are prohibited. Even churches are closing their doors. I’m sure it’s much the same where you are.

So what do we do in such unprecedented and uncertain times? How do we cope when the calendar is suddenly blank? Self-isolate and social distancing are new additions to most people’s vocabulary, but I have a little more experience than most with these concepts. Over the past six and a half years, I’ve had 14 PRRT treatments and I was required to self-isolate for one to two weeks after each one. The present COVID-19 crisis will likely last significantly longer than that, but this too shall pass and when it does, I don’t want to look back on this as time wasted.

We’ve just been handed a lot of extra uninterrupted time, something most of us never seem to have enough of. What will you do with yours?

Here are a few suggestions:

  • Declutter. Clean out a closet, a drawer, the kitchen cupboards. Start your spring cleaning early.
  • Try some new recipes. This one might become a necessity. We visited five grocery stores today only to find the meat departments almost empty. I’m definitely going to have to be somewhat creative with meal planning over the next while!
  • Prepare and freeze some meals for when life gets busy again.
  • If you’re able, get outside. Self-isolating doesn’t mean you have to stay inside. Go for a walk or, depending on where you live, do some yard work, ride a bike, go snowshoeing, paddle a canoe. Fresh air and exercise are essential to maintaining a positive outlook in trying times.
  • Check out Duolingo and start learning a new language.
  • Keep up social connections via phone or video chat.
  • Play board games.
  • Do jigsaw or crossword puzzles.
  • Finish the craft that you started some time ago and never completed.
  • Start a journal or a blog.
  • Read all those books that you never had time for.
  • Enjoy virtual tours of 12 famous museums from around the world.
  • Attend the opera online.

Whatever you do, don’t panic and don’t just sit around waiting for this to pass. Take wise precautions, be safe, but also seize the moment. Choose to do something worthwhile in the midst of these difficult and uncertain times. Make it a time worth remembering!

And one final bit of advice… assuming that you don’t live alone and that no one in your household is sick, remember that hugs are healthy! The thing that I missed most during my periods of post treatment isolation was the comfort of physical touch.

10 thoughts on “Living in unusual times

  1. These are indeed, unusual times. You always have such good ideas for us! Fresh air and exercise is definitely a must. We pray that folks will be sensible and self-isolate to help stop the spread of the virus. Scripture tells us that people were isolated in certain circumstances. My husband saw a picture on the internet yesterday of several hundred spring break students on beaches. We are getting our first grocery order today and expecting another from a different store on Saturday. We should be well set for quite a while. Elaine, take good care of yourself!

    • Thank you! I’m disturbed to hear of spring break students congregating on the beaches. I love the vitality of youth, but sometimes they think they’re invincible!

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