Everything I did in a day to keep my mind off of COVID-19|
I’m actually overloaded with energy these days.
It might sound strange as we’re living indoors at a time of quarantine, where space is limited. As a senior at Champlain College in Vermont, I’m no stranger to a busy schedule. In fact, I’m not used to having consistent times in which I can focus on myself, family, and friends. While I’m still balancing a lot, it’s beginning to feel as if this new slower pace is our new normal. As such, I’ve been doing my due diligence and catching up on things that have fallen by the wayside, meditating more and trying to focus on what matters.
But I can’t pretend like this has been a perfect storm for me and my life. There are moments when I feel like I can’t move forward, almost like I’m physically being held back by something inside me. Sometimes, even tears begin to flow and I have to take a moment to understand everything that’s happening, trying to explain how, in a matter of weeks, our lives have been upended.
It’s easy to wonder how other people are feeling, and if they’re struggling in similar ways. We envy the people who seem to be doing better than us but really, they’re just coping differently and have their own struggles. It comes back to how we shouldn’t compare ourselves to others because it hurts us and is toxic. The Atlantic talks about how we need to take a second to grieve our losses. We need to slow down and realize this hurts everyone but by no means is someone’s struggle is less important than another.
And that feeling of being physically held back by something? It’s normal.
According to a Pew Research Center survey one-in-five U.S. adults (18%) say they have had a physical reaction when thinking about the outbreak. Humans thrive off of feeling certain, and in times like these, it’s easy to feel a bit out of control based on human nature. The best thing we can do is to challenge ourselves to stay in the present, so says the American Foundation of Suicide Prevention.
From the research I’ve gathered, being present is remaining calm. With that being said, I took an entire day to be mindful or being, well, mindful. I wanted to challenge myself to be grounded – It’s the only way to survive.
I ~try~ and wake up at the first sound of my alarm. I know it’s good for me and deep down I really do want to be up and awake at this time but, I hit snooze.
I actually get up. I quickly wash my face and do an abridged version of my morning skincare routine. Just enough to make me feel refreshed and ready for my online (ugh) class. I start out by cleansing with Skin Food’s Egg White Pore Foam Cleanser. Tone up with Bioderma Sebium H20, and quickly moisturize with Belif Aqua Bomb. I top it off with The Body Shop Oils of Life Eye Cream Gel, loaded with caffeine. It brightens my complexions and instantly makes me look alive, something I need now more than ever.
I join my online financial management lecture from the comfort of my couch. Luckily, we don’t have to show our faces. To be honest, I fall asleep for a moment and only wake up because my professor says “f**k” really loudly. He’s giving pep-talks these days and they’re becoming a bit heated. I hope he doesn’t read this.
I’m horrible at making fancy coffee drinks at home (my bank account is in a committed relationship with oat milk lattes), so I seek out one for curbside delivery around town. I pick my spot, order online and hop in my car. Oh, and I’m still in my pajamas. I’m still tuned into my class on my iPhone (try it sometime if you’re on-the-go).
I drive around a bit feeling the sunshine and getting a sense of what’s happening around town. It’s kinda empty, lots of people are exercising… in groups. SMH. Yikes.
I call my mom. I’m a bit nervous about school, the job market, and what will happen this summer. She reminds me to be positive. I promise I’m trying.
I watch a pre-recorded lecture and then I decide to shower. I’m not a morning shower person but I’ve been trying it out for the past couple of days. Not sure if I like it, I don’t feel as clean and my day feels off.
I do some morning stretches. I’ve been diligent about how my body feels since working from home and it hasn’t been the greatest. These stretches are really helping my posture and how my muscles feel.
I begin to make a to-do list for the day. While I usually just have a mental check and the help of my planner, I’m finding I need a big visual mounted to my wall to really drive productivity and keep me on track. I’ve been trying to make them extra unique and organizing (something that I long to check tasks off of) by following bullet journaling tips.
My classes are over and I’m in full WFH mode. I get cracking on some articles and social media posts. I usually WFH in coffee shops but I’ve had to make do with my kitchen table. I sure miss the warm atmosphere my favorite spot gives off. And the endless lattes and baked goods.
It’s time for a facemask. I’ve been doing one every day. A charcoal, tea tree mud mask from Carbon Theory. I took some selfies, I’m feeling fresh and cute. I decided to check my mailbox and instantly regretted it as someone walking by saw me. With the facemask on. At least I was partially disguised.
I thought about graduation and the thought of it being canceled. I take a deep breath and journal my feelings to fight against the panic. I browse Amazon for a way to workout at home. I decide to order these.
I need to make some food. I’ve been limiting my grocery store trips and eating virtually the same thing. Huevos Rancheros. But, I decided to switch it up. I sauteed some asparagus and made a little pasta dish. I’m excited.
Back on my computer, I decide I need some music. I choose my 2019 top songs playlist on Spotify. You know, brighter times. I bust out in song forgetting my boyfriend is still asleep as he facetimes me from the other room. I’m so sorry…my asparagus and pasta is SO good.
It’s time for a guided meditation. I’ve been loving this one. I set up my yoga mat in front of my living room windows and I literally feel all my stress melt away. 22 minutes of pure bliss, I forget about all my responsibilities.
I step out onto my porch to work. It’s breezy out and I’m coated in the sunshine. I’m so thankful the weather is getting warmer.
I’ve been spending way too much time on Tik Tok lately. Oh well, it makes me laugh until it hurts and I truly love it. I try to learn some dance trends but I’m wishing I had a partner. Not entirely confident if my friends were here though that they would join in. I so desperately want to post one.
I clean my room. I have yet to put away all the clean laundry that I did at home over spring break. I organize all of my skincare and magazines. I find myself on my floor journaling again and reading through the pages I wrote when I was abroad.
I’m getting ready to go to meet my best friend at our local park. Instead of face timing, we’ve been meeting up and sitting in our respective cars to chat. We’re quite inseparable, and social distancing has been hard for us. She brings me a latte and sets it on the ground like an offering. I sanitize the mug.
It’s taco time! I’ve been looking forward to this all day. Mostly because I haven’t been sticking to a great meal schedule. I curbside pick up tacos and margaritas from my favorite Mexican place in town. I come home and decompress from the day with my boyfriend. I do another facemask (no shame) as I try and decide what to binge on Netflix next. I’ve already seen Tiger King, I watched it too prematurely within this quarantine. Maybe Love is Blind? My new normal doesn’t seem ~so~ bad – but will it last forever? Before I can think about my imminent future, a Netflix logo “bu-bums” onto my screen.