I have cut back from working so many days, so I have more time to myself. I am no longer doing errands or running here or there which uses up so much time. We now shop once a week for everything and live off that. We no longer go to restaurants, so we eat at home every night. We are not going to church or visiting family or friends. Our lives are now centered at home with immediate family. It’s as though we are in a little cocoon or pod and that feels cozy and right.
It seems like I was given permission to no longer feel obligated to give others my time and attention. For the Easter holiday we didn’t have to juggle visits and split family gatherings. I didn’t feel pulled in one direction or the other. It was peaceful to eat together, just my husband and son, go for a walk, and have quiet time. It was different, and unusual, but I liked it. It makes me notice how much of my time or activity is doing what ‘I should do’ instead of 'what I want’ for myself.
I never before realized how much more time I had to myself if I stopped being so busy. Being forced to stay home gives me permission to eliminate the extraneous from my life. It has given me boundaries I didn’t know I could make for myself. It is eye opening. It feels more healthy.
Sure, there are loses and struggles at this time of quarantine. Job loss and no income from that hurts. And who knows what the days ahead will hold? No one knows what lies ahead or whose lives may be destroyed by this virus. But for now we can do what we can for our selves. Reaching out to help others is done differently now. A phone call Instead of a visit. Maybe we can use this time to gain a different perspective; to look at what we are gaining in this time instead of what we are losing.
I’m working on it.
[This illustratration I did specifically for this blog post. It is done with gouache on Arches Hot Pressed Paper. A quick little painting that ended up taking my 5 hrs. But that was 5 hrs I used to play and learn about the properties of gouache. I am thankful for the time to explore and paint.] Photo credit for Alamy Stock Photo of milkweed pod for reference