It’s weird to think at the beginning of this month, we were planning a weekend getaway and our annual crawfish boil. We were living our normal routine. Things changed so fast. We didn’t book our weekend getaway. We postponed the crawfish boil, hoping to re-schedule in the next few months. We had to cancel our family cruise in May. I started working from home. We stopped going out socially.
Honestly, my schedule doesn’t feel different. (I’m a homebody!) I have more time since I don’t have to commute to and from work and workout studios. We usually eat out once or twice during the week, so we spend most of our time at home anyways. I also have more time because most of my blog content about restaurants is on hold.
However, there are a lot more feelings.
First, I am THANKFUL.
- I’m thankful I am healthy and safe and so is my family.
- I’m thankful for the funds to stock up our food supply in case we need to stay home for a long period of time.
- I’m thankful for a job and that I can work from home. Our team started working remotely last week.
- I’m thankful that friends are checking in and staying positive. (Picture of our first virtual happy hour above!)
- I’m thankful for grocery store employees, truck drivers, and medical professionals for keeping us fed and safe.
- I’m thankful for our communities coming together and helping in every way they can, from sharing fundraisers for the hospitality industry to making hand sanitizer for hospitals.
And at the same time, there’s a lot of anxiety, sadness, and fear. It’s ok to feel those feelings! Someone having it “worse” doesn’t invalidate what you feel. Our world has and is changing. It’s ok to mourn that.
- I think about everyone who has lost their job. I work at a hotel and many hotels are closing and laying off their employees except for a few executives. For now, our hotel is still open and some employees have a job while others are furloughed indefinitely.
- I think about everyone who needs to work outside the home, risking their health, and maybe need to work fewer hours, which means less pay. They may also need to find childcare.
- I think about the kids who are bored and anxious.
- I think about people who are sick or who live with the fear of getting sick because their immune system is already compromised.
- I think about everyone who has passed. While the elderly are more susceptible, young and healthy people have also died, seemingly suddenly.
- I think about what would happen if I get sick or someone in my family gets sick.
- I think about people who are mentally and emotionally struggling.
- I think about the elderly who don’t have help nearby and are afraid to go to the grocery store.
- I think about the ignorant and hateful racism towards Asian Americans. It feels like a personal attack when I read the stories.
- I think about the small businesses that have closed, hopefully temporarily and not forever.
- I think about the small businesses that are struggling to pivot their business to make some sort of money and dealing with all the stress in making the best decisions.
- I think about the urgency, pressure, and helplessness to help these small businesses.
There’s so much unknown out there, which is a big cause of all these emotions. All of our lives are changing, some more than others. I believe there are better days ahead. For me, it helps to not think about all the things I can’t control. I think about the things I can do to help and the silver lining. I’m thankful for that privilege.
- I can take care of my mental health. That means acknowledging those anxious feelings and fears and focusing on the good. I can slow down!
- I can take care of my physical health. I’m taking daily walks/runs with Kaira and finding ways to workout. Many workout studios are providing online instruction.
- I can support local businesses by buying take-out meals. Picking up an order is a good opportunity to get out and see the real world.
- I can spend more time with Kaira, who is six months now! I felt guilty leaving her alone during the day and always wondered what it would be like to spend more time with her. I’ve learned quickly that she loves the attention.
- I finally got a bike! I haven’t had one since I was a kid. Now Will and I can go on rides together like we’ve been talking about.
- I can make time for my backburner to-do list. What are the things that would improve my life but I haven’t made time to do? There are things on my goals list that I haven’t started yet and my blog to-do list is constantly growing.
If you want to help others, look up the food bank in your city or local fundraisers helping the hospitality industry. In Austin, donate to Central Texas Food Bank and check out this article on Eater Austin.
Hang in there! Brighter days are ahead. We are all in this together.