Did you know this post was part of a series? Check out all of my WFH recaps here!
Week 1 of social distancing and working from home is complete and I wanted to share a quick recap of how it’s been for me.
Stay at home dog mom
Ever since I adopted my sweet pup Rosie, I’ve joked about wanting to become a stay-at-home dog mom. Little did I know that that would become my reality very soon plus, of course, the ever present, looming, dark cloud of despair caused by the pandemic. I’ve said it multiple times this week and will continue to say it: if it wasn’t for her, I’d have gone crazy within two days. She forces me to go outside and get some fresh air and exercise. She encourages me to be patient and take in the sights and sounds (and smells). Because of her, there is some light among all this darkness. And it turns out that she really does just sleep all day, even when I am home.
Zoom is my new favorite thing and no, this post is not sponsored by Zoom. Our supervisor has been conducting optional daily team huddles for us to check in on each other and share any updates or ask questions. I have had several Zoom lunches with my podcast cohost Codie. I’ve conducted several advising sessions via Zoom and it was nice to check in with some of my students. On Saturday, I meditated with a couple of people from a meditation group I used to attend. None of us muted our sound which meant that we could take in the sounds, not just from our own environment, but that of others too. Some light footsteps, a door opening and shutting, a question being asked, a train and a plane – it was quite beautiful.
Yes, the Netflix Party Google Chrome extension everyone’s been talking about. My best friend, who lives over an hour away, and I watched several shows together that we had been recommending to each other. We chatted throughout and, after each episode, would call and talk about what we just watched. It let us bond through the distance. The concept of the extension is quite simple, I can’t believe no one thought of it before.
It can definitely be difficult to maintain any sort of positivity during a time like this but it’s not impossible. I’ve taken small steps to ensure that I keep my sanity and emotional balance. I still get ready in the morning, as I normally would, by putting on some makeup, fixing my hair and putting on clothes that I feel good in. I know that I’m not going anywhere or that I will only see a few neighbors when I walk Rosie. But for me, taking that time in the morning is vital to my self-care. Funnily enough, I didn’t realize that until now. I had gotten so caught up in my daily routine that it took a pandemic to remind me why I do some of the things I do and find new appreciation for them.
With darkness comes light. With this pandemic, I have noticed some positives. When I walk Rosie, there are usually other people I encounter on our path. But never have I seen so many families taking a leisurely stroll together – parents, kids and all! The other day, Rosie and I went to a park and saw a gentleman flying a kite – the last time I saw someone flying a kite was over 10 years ago. And then, of course, there is actual, natural light thanks to my windows which my office is sorely lacking.
Nervous about the future
I still get pangs of daily anxiety, especially when I open Facebook. Our students are “coming back” from spring break starting tomorrow and I’m nervous about the amount of emails I’ll be waking up to. I continue to take all precautions when I do have to go out but still worry about getting sick, or worse, of people I care about getting sick. One day at a time, I suppose.
How are you coping with social distancing? Let me know in the comments.