Two Months In…

I’ve reached a turning point with this virus and it seems many other people in this country have too. How that turning point turns might be an individual thing. I’m not angry, I’m not looking to get back to going to bars and clubs (what?), nothing like that. I know that because of my age and because of my pseudo-allergy which causes asthma, sometimes called Samter’s Triad and sometimes called Aspirin Exacerbated Respiratory Disease, I’m part of the vulnerable population. I also feel that because I have an income and I do not need to go to work, I should not be out there taking chances that could potentially take a hospital bed away from someone less lucky than I am.

But it’s getting to me. The other day — Memorial Day — when Bear and I got out of Bella at the Refuge, I started to cry. There was no reason. It was a nice morning, a cool day, a beautiful day. I had things on my mind. A demonstration/parade was being held and there was a chance it could turn ugly (it didn’t). Businesses in my valley are hurting and desperate to open up with the argument that there are just not that many cases down here. In fact, the number of cases has been steadily rising and people without symptoms can pass the virus along. I’ve decided not to deal with a couple of businesses who have publicly denied the reality of C-19. It’s one thing to want to reopen and willingly follow the guidelines; another to deny science and reality.

The last normal weekend before this started was the weekend of the Crane Festival, Monte Vista’s second biggest whoop-dee-do. The biggest whoop-dee-do — the Stampede — has been cancelled. My friend Lois and her son Mark were here for the festival and we had a great time. At the festival craft and nature show, I saw some people I like very much but seldom have the chance to see. There was much hugging and catching up and physical proximity. I spent a long time talking to a woman from Albuquerque who was there with a variety of raptors. It was great. Perfect human contact.

It’s just so strange that a week later, everything changed. I made my last in-person, walking around the store visit to the supermarket that week. It was eerie and awkward. Systems hadn’t been devised yet. No one really knew what to do or how to do anything. The push to sew masks hadn’t happened yet but was about to. Then there was this intense and hopeful and determined effort to help the hospitals and support the lockdown. People seemed to have been behind the whole idea of “flattening the curve.”

Six weeks in, people are “over it.” “The curve is flattened, let things get back to normal,” as if the governor of our state had made everyone stay home, at gun point. As if “flattening the curve” was a “cure” or vaccine for C-19.

In reality my life hasn’t changed a lot, but the strange political landscape and knowledge that this is going to go on for a while, well, it’s affected me. I’m going to have to figure out a way to “re-open,” so to speak, my own creative life because I’m figuring on this lasting until next spring. Summer’s are never easy for me anyway, and at least I have winter to look forward to.

Then, maybe???

This evening the sky was beautiful, golden, intense, and summery. The wind was fresh, and I went outside to talk on the phone with a friend. I would have taken Teddy for a walk, but I rode the bike-to-nowhere VERY far across some Spanish mountains, and I’ve learned that riding the bike FAR and walking don’t make for a very comfortable night’s sleep. I went back to watching a film I started last night and that I was enjoying. Bear came in from the back yard and I asked, “Do you want a cookie?” I got up to get her one. She didn’t stop in the kitchen. She went back outside. I followed her. There, in an orange, golden pink and azure sky from which a light rain was falling, was a rainbow, the first one of summer.

29 thoughts on “Two Months In…

  1. Dogs always know where the best sights and smells are. Follow the dogs.

    If life wasn’t a roller coaster before, it certainly is now. I tell myself to just go with the flow, the peaks and valleys of emotions, because I can’t control anything beyond my own reactions.

    It always helps to have a beautiful sunset – or rainbow – to finish the day. Hang in there.

  2. I understand your feelings — I, too, had a minor meltdown in the middle of last week, 2-1/2 months in. The issue was an HOA meeting with improper notification, but it hit me harder than usual, and I ended up writing a rather angry message requesting that meetings be properly noticed. Fortunately, it doesn’t seem to have burned bridges, but it could have. The uncertainty of everything these days simply tipped me over the edge! Two visits to the Great Blue Herons over the weekend, and a couple of good long nights of sleep have helped me regain my equilibrium, but I can tell that I’m not on my normally even keel!

  3. We’re emerging slowly from lockdown and it seems to be working. Next week, cafes and restaurants re-open. It’ll be so nice to go out for a meal, and support our local businesses. We’ll sadly lose some, despite plenty of government assistance, but hopefully most will weather the storm. People’s experience of Covid-19 seems very much to be a question of location, location, location. Hang on in there!

  4. We are almost back to how it was before the hairy pea invasion. We have so few new cases in the country, about 5-10 a day and the hospitals have few patients to deal with. You could say we are over it, but I think something has remained in all of our heads. It could happen again, will it return are a couple of questions and life will probably no longer be as it was. We keep a distance and find we can still talk to each other. Stores are not so full of people, it is comfortable to shop and many who began to shop online still do it. I shop online for items that it is always good to have at home. I buy fresh groceries in the store. That side of the pandemic has almost become an improvement on daily stress. Through discipline and being a small country we have probably got through it all.

  5. i so get this, and think many of us are at that point in one form or another. my daily walks keep me sane, but i miss some of the things in the world that i took for granted, the little rituals, celebrations, interactions…

  6. When people at work found out I was retiring this past February, the first thing (the only thing!) everyone asked was, ‘What are you going to do?’ Nothing. I had no plans. I make vague plans, but prefer to fly by the seat of my pants. No harm no foul that way. Well, I am glad I had not made plans b/c I would have been angry/disappointed that nothing had worked out. I don’t know what the new normal will be, but I’ll just bide my time on our home improvement projects and hope I remember how to talk to people once we can go mask-free. Hang in there, Martha.

  7. The Covid world is a thing. We have to deal with it based on vulnerability. I’m in the vulnerable group and I am very careful but not afraid. In a few weeks I’m going to change locations and see what that is like. If I’m comfortable, I’ll continue moving around. I have see how it goes with the infection rate.

  8. I am experiencing many similar feelings. I go out when needed, but nothing ‘Social’ is in my needed column. It has been a long roller coaster ride and it is not over yet.

  9. Yeah it’s a grieving process I think. For what we used to take for granted perhaps. Spontaneous hugs. Standing and chatting. Not being afraid of other people who are just breathing nearby. My head goes into frozen mode and yes there has been random crying too. Take care. ❤️

  10. I was discussing this with Sparky this morning. The question is not when will this be over but when will we be exposed and how sick will we be? It seems inevitable that we will get the coronavirus since the option for a vaccine is likely at least 12 -18 months out…In the meantime we continue to take precautions. Even if we are the only ones wearing masks we will try our best to avoid this plague!

    • I’m definitely trying to avoid it. I could end up very sick because I have asthma and a couple of other normally insignificant health problems and I live basically in the middle of nowhere which isn’t ideal…

      BUT I’m not 100% careful. I hang out with the kids and their parents down the alley and while they are very careful with their lives and I am very careful with mine, who knows? So yeah. It is probably “When” and “if” and “how bad?”

  11. I can relate to what you are feeling. In the beginning of the lockdown, I used to feel really depressed to see formerly busy business centres deserted each time I went out for groceries or medicine. Luckily , I don’t need to leave the house other than to check on my parents daily.
    It is a good idea to take pleasure in things like sunsets and rainbows.

  12. I think we are all trying to figure out a way to “reopen” our creative lives. It has been so very difficult to concentrate, even before George Floyd. Seems like your pup knows how to cheer you up!

    • Yep. I realized there’s a little bit of me that doesn’t want to start anything because maybe I won’t be able to finish. Another little part wonders what I could write or paint that would have more urgency that life as it is at this moment in time. Useless thoughts but they are there. I guess we’ll figure it out.

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