It’s okay to feel how you’re feeling


I think most of us aren’t even sure what day it is, or the last time we put real pants on (let’s be serious, I’m not bad about that part). But these are interesting times, and I think we are all feeling certain emotions about this COVID19 virus. Think about it, this is changing history. This is going to be written in history books someday. And as crazy as it sounds, this might be a huge discussion in history someday, making 9/11 and the market crash of 2008 a distant memory. And we are living it. Right now. Everyday. It’s crazy, and the emotions that are rising up for you are okay. There is no specific way we should be navigating these times. What you are feeling is valid.

Let Go of Expectations

This does not have to be a time that you learn a new language or Marie Kondo your whole life. It’s okay if you spend this time slowing down and taking it in. This is already an uncertain time, we don’t know the end, we don’t know the outcome. And putting extra expectations on yourself is just going to fuel the fire. More stress and more anxiety is not the way to get through these days. So in case your waiting for this….I give you permission to do nothing. You don’t need a schedule to get you through every day. You don’t need a to-do list a mile long or you weren’t “productive” that day. You don’t need to pick up a new side hustle because “everyone should have a second source of income”. You do you, boo.

There is not right or wrong way to handle this situation. There is no playbook, because if there was, maybe we would have learned how to handle a situation like this. So don’t worry about what Sharon is feeling or how she is reacting. Yes, some people might be using this time to work on a side hustle and build their dreams. And others might be watching 6 episodes of Tiger King everyday because they don’t know what else to do with their time. Again, no right or wrong actions.

And with that, there are no right or wrong feelings. It’s okay to be terrified of the virus and worried it might hit your family. It’s okay to have an aching heart for all those on the front lines going to work everyday with a pit in their stomachs.

But it’s also okay to just keep a normal routine. It’s okay if you think the measures being taken are extreme or “too much”. We are all entitled to our own opinions and feelings, and that is the best thing about our country. We aren’t being told how to feel or how to handle our time at home. We aren’t being forced to make masks or anything else. We are simply being told to stay home, and if that makes you feel uneasy, embrace that. It’s okay to feel how you feel.

Worry About Yourself

There is no doubt that this situation has shown us how to come together and support each other in some instances, but also how to post blame on others. This is no ones fault. How the situation has been handled might be less than ideal, but that doesn’t mean we need to start spitting hate at everyone that walks by.

You control you and your family. And that is it.

We don’t need the judgement of who is considered “essential” and “non-essential” to play a role in this already hard situation. Everyone is just trying to provide for their families, and continue to keep people on payroll to not end up burdening someone else. This is a hard situation, for everyone, remember that.

And let’s not forget about the hate we are throwing at those that are leaving their houses for what you deem “not essential” to life right now. Did you ever think that the guy who keeps going to Home Depot to get supplies is just trying to stay busy. Because if he doesn’t he finds himself back in the bottom of a bottle after 20 years of sobriety? Or how about the women who has battled with depression and suicide for years, keeps going to the store everyday for a few groceries? She keeps lives alone, and that cashier is the only person she gets to talk to because her family abandoned her. And without that interaction, she doesn’t know what she will resort to.

You have no idea what someone is going through, so before you start worrying about other peoples actions, just focus on you and your family.

Control What you Can

It feels like there is a lot that is out of our control right now, and while that may be true, there is some things we can still control.

We can still control how we react to situations, even if we can’t control the situation. I get it, it sucks that we cannot leave our houses except for essential activities. BUT, we still have a house to go to. We can use this time to clean said house, or to build blanket forts and watch movies. When’s the last time you said “I wish I had more time to____” because here it is, all the time you want!

We can still control our health. Now is the perfect time to get into a routine of healthy living. You can’t regularly go to the store to buy yourself junk, you can’t go get ice cream, you can’t just go to McDonalds. So spend your time cooking healthy meals, learning where to start, figuring out a schedule you can stick to. Not to mention, outside is still free range. You can create a routine of walking every morning and/or evening. You can join an at home workout program to get you moving your body during these days. There is so much you can do, so I better NEVER hear anyone say again “I don’t have time,” because right now is where you build the foundation that you can then maintain when we resume “normal” life.

We can still spend time with loved ones. I’m not going to lie, I am currently living my dream. I have always talked about Taylor (my fiancé) and I working side by side everyday, then working out, cooking dinner and hanging out. And that is exactly what we get to do right now! So enjoy this time with loved ones. You’re mad you work so much you are missing your kids life, well, now you get your chance for new memories. And can we also talk about technology? All the apps and games and videos we can use to communicate with loved ones we can’t physically be with? Such a blessing.

And I will lastly say, to all the first responders or people still out there risking their lives everyday to help our country through this…we see you. We appreciate all you are doing, and we will never be able to thank you enough. Because when you signed up for your job, you had no idea it would come to this. So while you are out there battling on the front lines, the rest of us will raise a hand and salute your efforts, because you deserve it.

So feel your feelings, do your duties, and remember that there is no right or wrong in this situation. There is abiding by the rules and trying to make the best out of a messy situation. Let’s hope this is all over soon, and it’ll be a memory before summer hits.

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Haley Rowe April 10, 2020