Random Musings

Blending Before and Now

Hello, lovelies!

Aside from the grocery store or the chiropractor, it has been 27 days since I’ve left my house. We’ve been put into another stay-at-home order until the end of April and I imagine it’s going to stay this way for months still after that.

That first month, for me, was denial, depression and anger. It was disbelief and fear and questioning. It was grief at canceled plans and events, rage at an incompetent government and disbelief at the support it still receives. It was fighting for a return to normalcy, until I finally accepted that there is no return. Even when the orders are lifted and we’re allowed to leave our houses. Even when gatherings of more than those you live with resume and businesses reopen and travel continues and sports return; when the death toll stops rising and a vaccine is hopefully found.

There is no normal, after this.

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I’m not sure when I consciously accepted this, but I think it is when I updated my daily routine on my calendar from what it used to be, to one that factored in remote work, and didn’t put an end date. And having that calendar, showing myself how I could still accomplish some of the things important to me–how my schedule was easily adjusted, even if my mental headspace has struggled–helped.

Yesterday, I realized that I could still make a To-Do list.

Like, just because the world is broken and everything is horrible right now and everything is different and terrifying…doesn’t mean that I can’t do something that helps me and grounds me so much as making a To-Do list.

Weirdly enough, this floored me.

It also helped me focus and get things done, when I’ve been struggling to do just that–which, by the way, is perfectly okay and a totally reasonable response that has no expiration date. In that vein, while I am using a routine and a To-Do list to help remind me of the tools I used to help structure my life Before, I am also doing things much differently.

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Like not beating myself up that I’m sleeping in to literally minutes before I have to get up for work, just because the extra sleep right now helps.

Or how I don’t always do my hair every day and let myself wear sweats and T-shirts.

Or how sometimes I skip my workout to take a really long bath and scroll through Twitter.

Or how I’ll play video games more and stay up longer, because it’s one of the only things that takes my mind off of everything.

I think the most important thing right now is to listen to what YOU need. If you can’t be productive right now or pick up a new hobby, don’t listen to that pressure (and don’t give into it yourself)–even when it feels like everyone else is doing everything and more and while you’re just struggling to get out of bed. If staying productive helps distract you, do it–and don’t feel guilt when you’re able to be productive when it feels like everyone else can’t. If trying to find a way to blend what life was like Before with how life is like Now, like I’m doing, then do that.

The thing is: there is no right way to process and adapt to living not only in lockdown, but living amidst a global pandemic. We just gotta take it one day at a time. And if utilizing a fucking To Do List is bringing me enough joy to feel like I can conquer the day, then you bet I’m going to do it.

I hope you’re able to find things that help you feel like you can conquer the day, too.

Cheers.post signature

10 thoughts on “Blending Before and Now”

      1. I just leave it down or throw it up in a bun… and sometimes I brush it haha. I am not good at doing my hair lol

  1. A great post with lots of real advice. Like you, I’ve felt a bit lost and bewildered, but focusing on what I can do is helping a lot. I’m a to do list person too, and that has helped me feel as though I’m doing something despite the absence of an expiry date on the current situation. And you are so right, there is no returning to our life before, but by accepting that we can deal a little better with our life right now 😌

    1. Aww, I’m so glad this was helpful to you and that you found it relatable! I dunno why To-Do lists are so powerful to me, but they seriously are. I hope you’re still able to find hope and healing as each day moves forward!

  2. I agree completely, great processing of what’s going on. Over a year ago I started making Sundays a “stay home day” where I took the day to take care of me and my home. I always made a week’s To Do List that night.

    When this started I realized that my Sunday, at least, could stay “normal” and it helped me transition faster. Dumb luck for sure, but then I was able to start finding ways to do a routine on other days too.

    Hope you and your family continue to stay safe, string and healthy. Phone call next week?

  3. Lovely post! And yes, I’m living in sweats and t-shirts right now… and trying to remember to brush my hair before Zoom meetings. It does feel like there’s a lot of online emphasis on being amazing at home — taking lessons or doing crafts or streaming content — and I think it’s also perfectly okay to just rest and enjoy personal comforts. We each have to cope in our own ways. (For me, the days when the sun is shining are cause to celebrate, since I can go for a walk and sit on my back porch with a book — two of my favorite things!)

    1. Yes, exactly! While I would definitely love to learn a language one day and there are skills and routines I do want to embrace, I don’t want to let myself guilty is now is not the time in when that happens. And yesssss, I love it when it’s warm enough and the sun’s out for me to go outside and read my book during my lunch break!

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