Living in this New World

I can’t say that this being locked up thing is getting to me. It honestly really isn’t. I wasn’t one who really liked going out too much anyways, so being forced to stay home for the sake of my own terrible immune system and to protect others seems perfectly fine to me. I never really use babysitters aside from 2-3 times a year, so having the kids around me 24/7 is something that doesn’t get to me because that’s my normal anyways. I can get more work done. Fit in more time for things like working out and clearing out the DVR of all those trashy reality shows I didn’t have time for. What perfect time to escape this horrible reality we live in right now than fake, trashy reality shows that gives your brain a break?

As things start to open up, I keep going “nah, I’m good”. I’m not ready yet. I won’t be ready until the numbers are down to next to nothing or there’s a vaccine/actual medicine to help prevent the virus or significantly reduce the symptoms. I’ve very much prone to upper respiratory infections. I’ve had sinus infections so bad the doctor orders me to take steroids and bed rest. If something like that can take me out, the idea of something more serious doesn’t make me feel safe at all.

But schools will be starting in fall. My youngest will have his 8th birthday in September and my oldest will have his rescheduled Confirmation ceremony a few weeks later. These are events where I would normally throw parties that people love because I make a lot of adequate tasting food. But having a party while this is all going on? That’s silly to me. I have family members with compromised immune systems. I have a terrible immune system. Attending parties like this or inviting parties into my home is not something I’m about right now. Other people can make the choice to have a massive party, but honestly I’m out. I’ll be clear right now. Nope. Don’t be insulted. I don’t mean it as an insult. But I have to make decisions that are right for my family. And I don’t think my family could function without me.

After discussing an idea I was offered by my father with my husband, I realized a great idea to have some celebration for these events while minimizing risks. People can come to the house between certain hours on those dates if they want to drop off a present and/or just say “Hi”, then they can take a cupcake and goody bag for the kids, then people can keep cycling in as they want throughout the day. I don’t have to worry about figuring out a socially distanced birthday party with my small house, which would be even more complicated if it rains and I can’t take advantage of my decently sized lawn. And I can properly disinfect after each guest. And it helps people who don’t want to sit around at a kid’s party all day long so that they can leave without sounding rude. It seems like a great idea in theory. We’ll see if people get insulted when they get their invitations.

The point is, everyone is working through this matter at their own pace. Some people are ready to have big parties, and that’s okay for them. Some people aren’t ready to do anything. That should be equally okay. People shouldn’t be insulted by people not wanting to attend parties right now. I’m waiting until my doctors and the experts on this matter to say “It’s all good now, folks”. Forcing others to move at a pace they aren’t ready for and shaming them or getting angry at them for working at a different pace is actually kind of selfish and terrible. People interpret information differently. Some insist this is a hoax. That’s cool. Some prefer to err on the side of caution for whatever reason. That’s also cool. It’s not your place to tell anyone what they should be doing while people are dying around them. You do you, let me do me.

Managing a Tummy Ache During a Pandemic

What we’re learning so far is that life still needs to move on, even in a way that isn’t our usual, no matter what circumstances are going on around us. We still have to work to pay bills, if we’re fortunate enough to do so. We have to juggle that with remote learning plans to ensure our children are still exercising their brains. We have to manage their science projects from school that you messed up because your child was so excited he tore off the instructions and you were left going “oops” or you have to grow a plant even though you have the worst green thumb in the planet and ended up killing their science project.

Deep breath. Now, you just have an added worry. Fortunately, my husband has been spending a majority of this working from home though there have been times where he’s had to go out. He’s the one who goes out for groceries because his wife has a terrible immune system, so I stay home with the youngest. The only trips the youngest and I ever make out is to walk over to the school to grab their food packs, because it gives the kids some routine where they go out and get fresh air to do something.

That doesn’t mean no germs are coming into the house. Last weekend, my husband ended up with a stomach bug that we watched carefully, but it went away after a few days. Then, my youngest had it. This stomach bug is making its way through our house during a pandemic. That’s not great for my anxiety at all. This is where educating myself comes in. I understand the symptoms of the virus. I know that it’s a stomach bug because there’s a very low-grade fever, nothing with the respiratory tract, and the symptoms went away after a few days. Though it does seem to spread. My oldest is now showing symptoms. My house is doomed. Mommy is the last person standing, so you know that means she’s going to get smacked. Let’s see how these monsters last without me for a few days.

Still, it’s easy to freak out. It’s normal to. The idea that you can be as safe as possible and you just need someone else to do the same to avoid getting sick. That’s why we avoid going out. That’s why we avoid takeout as much as possible. That’s why it’s important to educate yourself and #science. By denying science, denying how serious this illness is, by not educating yourself is not only hurting you but the people around you. It doesn’t matter that you’re young and healthy. It can still get you. It doesn’t matter if you’re young and healthy, the people you visit may not be. Is it really worth the risk?

Finding the right balance of being concerned without being overly freaked out is important for your sanity. Again, this is the importance of staying educated. That’s why you wear your mask out, even if you think you look ridiculous. Even if it fogs up your glasses. Even if you don’t think you can breathe in it. You can, I promise. That’s why you wash your hands constantly no matter how dry they get. Just buy a lotion from Lush Cosmetics, trust me they’re great. (Not paid sponsor, I’m not popular enough for that. But, I like sharing great products.) The sooner that people stop being idiots, the sooner this gets under control. Sure, you can be scared. I’m pretty terrified, if I’m going to be honest. Not just that this thing is going to cause serious damage to my friends, who are out there working despite all of this going on. Not just that my family can be impacted by it. But because if this keeps going on, we’re all going to run out of food and toilet paper because people panic buy everything. Then that makes other people panic buy even more because they are afraid they aren’t going to have any food because now you’re in a cycle where the only winners are the businesses selling us the food.

As for now, I’m going to practice my vomit exercise as one child has started vomiting in the bathroom (hopefully the toilet, but you never know with him) and the other into a bucket while laying on the couch. All while trying to keep my sanity and hold off this stomach bug as much as possible. Because that’s what mom’s do.