Be a Queen in Quarantine
Updated: May 6, 2020
We are all at home these days given C O R O N A - V I R U S.
To be honest, I am SICK of hearing about it. And by sick, I mean mentally and emotionally. I know you're fed up with it too. Can CV just pack up and be gone already?
We don't need it, we don't want it, so... bye Felicia! Wishful thinking, I know.
Reality is a bigger pill to swallow.
My heart absolutely aches more for all the innocent lives lost in this horrible pandemic. My heart aches even much more for loved ones unable to say goodbye, hug or kiss them one last time. Simply awful in every way imaginable.
Everyone is affected. Some far worse than others. For the rest of us not personally or deeply as affected, yes, we are blessed. Sure, there's a laugh here or there from a stupid meme on IG that makes us feel light and fluffy about the situation.
Some days are better than others.
We've become accustomed to living out of our PJ's (for those that have the luxury to wfh), giving our car engines, bras and our blush brushes a break. But more than likely, there are other moments.. minutes.. hours... days.. (don't lie) where we can't bare to feel anything BUT sadness, frustration and anger sprinkled with moments of maybe... nothing at all.
We've become accustomed to wearing a messy bun and yoga pants eating Milano cookies and drinking wine on the couch, all the while, watching Tiger King.
Really... Whose fault is this?
Why is this happening?
Why NOW.. or EVER?!
I'd be lying if I told you these thought's didn't initially cross or fester in my mind, because yep, they did.
Jesus can you please just take that wheel? Now?
Some are definitely suffering more than others. So many have lost jobs and with that, some have lost their sense of self worth and purpose. They've lost their ability to contribute financially and that can be devastating. What if you're the only breadwinner in the family? What if you're a single mama of 4? What now? Is unemployment really enough and will it arrive in time to buy cereal and diapers before you run out? Of course this affects people, especially the lower middle class. It affects families mentally and emotionally. It causes difficulty in managing expectations, paying rent, paying employees, affording healthcare and medication... the list goes on and on.
And, who is there to lend a shoulder to comfort you when you can't help but cry if you live alone? I have friends in this situation and it pains me knowing they are lacking and yearning for a partner to just be there. Cabin fever is a real thing. No joke.
Or, how about those full time employees who now have to take on an added never ending shift of parenthood? I mean, I get it. Once a parent, always a parent. But when you have little ones requiring so much of you, who CAN you turn to? And bless the single parents out there. You deserve the most respect. As if working full time wasn't enough, the following has now been added to your daily task list: cook, maid, teacher, backyard play attendant, tutor, nurse, discipliner, provider of stimulating exercises (mentally + physically) and entertainer (all within the lovely compounds of your studio, apartment, home, yard, garage, balcony or block if you are brave or desperate enough to push it).
What about the elderly that rely on touch and mental stimulation? Who will read to them and how will they feel when visits from loving family members are denied? And how about those of us that do have partners at home? Lucky, right? There's no escaping those once cute - now annoyances, that's for sure. But, I'm starting to think that if we can make it through this lockdown without killing each other, there's a good chance we can make it through ANYTHING!
What I do know is that - what we focus on, E X P A N D S.
We can choose to focus on the reality as we once knew it to be, or we can embrace our "new now" and live life as best as we can. As queen, what other choice do we possibly have? We can't control when this will end, so how about we focus on controlling what we DO have power over, which is.. Ta-da! That beauty staring back at you in the mirror. We can only control OURSELVES.
My Masters Degree teacher, Patricia always started the semester with this quote and it rings hard and loud in my mind right about now:
“Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.”
So how about less self destructing and more self love? What would a queen do? Well, a queen would do what is needed to feed her mind, body and soul. No hesitation or question about it.
Now, what will you do?
Below are some ideas. Give 'em a try. Keep what works and toss the rest!
* Call a friend if you're on the verge of tears. Good ones always make you laugh.
* Grab a notebook and pen. Now write! Our minds tend to carry the burden of our stress and writing is a healthy way to get it out of mind and onto paper. I always feel lighter after expressing myself and it creates greater mental clarity which alleviates a bad attitude, because ain't nobody got time for that!
* Ask your partner for 15-30 minutes to watch the kids so you can go for a brief walk or run and get some air in PEACE, ALONE. Swap turns.
* If you don't have a partner, practice teaching your kids to meditate or do yoga on youtube with you. If you've absolutely HAD IT, (I've nannied a ton, so I get it) give in to their desired "luxuries" if it means more peace for you. Give them the darn video game remote if it means you get a solid nap or meditation session in, then take a deep breath and L E T IT GO. You're doing your best and that's all that matters.
* Cook and bake till you get sick of looking at flour and eggs, or onions and olive oil like I've recently become. BUT, be proud you learned so many new recipes. Atta girl. Your future dinner options look a little more interesting now!
* Pull all the weeds in your yard if you have them. Prune and be rid of all those dead flowers, twigs and brown, crunchy leaves. Consider them toxic like all your exes; they need to go!
* If you crave gardening but don't have a yard, order some soil and seedlings. Use an old egg-crate to start growing them, water and place in a sunny spot. Nothing inspires me more than seeing nature grow. Replant once they outgrow their little home.
* What did you do as a kid that made your heart jump for joy? Did you love to paint? Go on Amazon.com and order paint, brushes and a canvas and let the paint glide onto paper. Grab a glass of vino while you're at it. Is an IPA more your thing, or a green tea? Great.
Voila, you've got Paint Night!
* Zoom or skype your friends and watch your favorite movie. Relive all those embarrassing late nights partying. "What was the name of that cute guy again? The one with the green eyes?" N.S. - Yep, I remember. Hah, the good times! There were good times back then and there will be good times again! Don't lose faith.
When we can't go out, we have absolutely no choice but to look deep inside. We must go in.
And remember, like every other rainy, awful day. This too shall pass.
If you're struggling to find something to be grateful for, start from the bottom and work your way on up.
Did you wake up easily, sit up and walk to the restroom this morning? Were you able to shower and dress into your daytime jammies all by yourself? Were you able to make yourself a not so good cup of coffee and scrambled eggs? Were you able to pick up the phone and message your friend the latest hilarious meme? Did you call your parents? When you opened your fridge, did you notice there was cold food in there looking right back at you? And after devouring dinner, brushing your teeth and hopping into bed, did you notice there was a roof above to keep you safe, and cozy bedsheets to keep you warm?
I too take so much for granted, but slowing down makes me realize I'm not just grateful for my health and safety, I'm grateful I'm alive. Our world is suffering, so many lives lost and so many hearts hurting. Due to social distancing, we can't hug and kiss our loved ones, so what can we do?
We must start by giving that excess love back to ourselves. Let's practice being healthier, loving, caring and vibrant in our daily lives. Let's do more of what we love to do. Let's consume only enough news to stay informed, but not dwell and watch it 24/7. Give your eyes and your soul a rest. Turn off the tv and turn on some good music. It will elevate your energy and improve your overall wellbeing.
Let's press the stop button on all the repetitive negative thoughts that create anxiety, and take a deep breath together. We will get through it, one day at a time.
With so much love + big, tight, virtual hugs,