During times like what we are currently going through, we are all trying to put on a brave face. We keep saying we are ok, even when we probably aren’t. You know what, it’s ok to not to put on a brave face all of the time. It’s ok to feel anxious, sad, confused or depressed right now. When this whole thing started, I was ok. I felt good. I already work from home and had a routine. Most people aren’t used to this. On top of my routine, I decided to give myself a more structured schedule. Get up, do yoga, blog or draw, allow myself some time on social, COVID-19 updates, admin stuff, lunch, sew a bit, write, dinner…. etc. There were days that I didn’t feel like doing anything at all, but… I told myself, you need to keep to this schedule. Then…whammo, last week, depression. This week I effed up my neck. (I hold stress in my upper back and neck)
Yup… this girl suffers from depression and anxiety. What brings depression on? A number of things, but one of the biggies…. the news. I cannot read, watch or listen to the news because it brings on anxiety and depression, yet… EVERY SINGLE FUCKING DAY I WAS LISTENING TO IT. I needed to stop, but I needed to be informed, so I found a summary newsletter that comes out everyday from CBC. When it hits my inbox, I can scan it, read it all or delete it without opening it. On social I’ve muted anyone who is constantly posting conspiracy stuff or angry news stuff. Yes, you can mute people. Do it!
Most of what is making me anxious right now is going outside and grocery shopping. I need to go out for daily walks for my health and am worried that there will be hordes of people out there too. There hasn’t been and those who are out are courteous. But grocery shopping…. eeeeeeee. The last few times my husband has been going in for the most part. Last week was especially tough for me. I now have several masks. I know they won’t stop me from catching it, but wearing them does help with anxiety. It’s ok to feel this way.
You know what else is ok. If you have a day when you feel like doing nothing or you want to binge watch Netflix all day, or read all day or stare out window all day, just fucking do it! After… what ever week this is, I’ve stopped having my overly structured schedule. I’m back to my old routine and it feels better. I’m also not beating myself up for not being productive. Mind you, that has nothing to do with Pandemic Guilt as I call it. (Will get to that in a moment.) I’ve always been that way. Keep busy, don’t be lazy, accomplish stuff. I’ve given myself permission to be a lazy fuck once in a while.
Pandemic Guilt (as I’m calling it) is feeling like you should be doing something all the time. You see all of your friends sewing masks. You see friends working out like fiends. You see friends doing, doing, doing, doing. Ahhhhhhhh! You may also have people trying to guilt you into doing one or all of those activities. If you don’t want to, don’t do it. If you do it and it will fuck up your mental health. DON’T DO IT. Also, feel free to tell people to back the fuck up (it’s ok to be nice about this) if they are harassing you about it. It’s ok to not participate!
Do something kind for yourself during these times. Watch movies, read a book, take three hour bathes, order a dozen donuts, eat pizza… order a dozen donuts. I swear we didn’t eat them all in one sitting. Shut up! But seriously, do something that makes you happy, even if that something is doing nothing. No one is the boss of you and the only one who truly knows what makes you happy is you!