Socially Distant Diaries ~ Week 1

For most people, the past 7-10 days have been a roller coaster. Lots of warnings, closings, and being socially distant. General admonitions to just stay home, official admonitions to just stay home. And news. So many news updates! Some people are still working (thank you, healthcare workers, grocery store people, and other miscellaneous ‘essentials’) but a huge sector of us are hunkered down at home.

Initially, I thought social distancing was going to be a breeze. Nothing to do but sit home, catch up on my reading, do some workouts and house projects, right? Then I remembered I have children. Said children like to eat, frequently. They like to play. Outings are generally smiled upon–they break up the afternoons and help us to like each other more. Occasionally, I enjoy the opportunity to have an outing by myself. When outings are not an option, there is an oversupply of drama, messes, and general angst, which means it is in my best interest to direct entertainment. And… you get where I’m going with this… Spoiler alert: I’m not getting nearly as much reading (or anything, really) done as I thought I would.

It’s a joyous time of family togetherness.

So much togetherness!

In any case, I feel like I learned a few things in our first week that I hope to implement this week to smooth out the rough patches. I’m going to share them here, and I welcome any suggestions. Here’s the thing, I do want to really enjoy and soak up this time together. I’d also like to retain my sanity, such as it is. Staying home constantly is a change, even for us introvert-type homebodies, and we can use all the ideas/support we can get!

Goals for the Week
  1. First, and most importantly: I’m limiting my consumption of the news. It’s tough, with all the news constantly updating, but the truth of the matter is that it doesn’t affect my day to day life that much. I can wait to check it until the evening when most of my obligations are wrapped up. I don’t need to be constantly on edge with whatever terrible headlines are popping up today. I’ve noticed the biggest difference in my stress level and consequent lack of patience this last week and that has to change.
  2. Get outside everyday. Yes, we’re staying home, but it is more important than ever to get out in the fresh air. I’m going to make getting outside a priority, even if we have to suit up and walk in the rain.
  3. Read things other than the news. Alongside constantly checking the news, I noticed a dip in my other reading. Not a helpful trend! I need to focus on the Bible, keep up on my educational reading, delve into some good fiction, and generally fill my mind with other things.
  4. Workout everyday and try to hit 10,000 steps. That step count is tough to meet when we’re staying home all the time, but it’s important to stay active.
  5. Try to make space for “my” projects in the afternoon, but have a back up plan and move forward cheerfully when plans go awry. I don’t have to be involved in everything the kids are doing, but sometimes they do need direction.
  6. Somewhat related to the last, I want to be intentional about involving the kids in whatever I am working on. They love to help, and it’s important for them to have valuable things to do too.

Those are my big goals for the week. This is a unique situation, with new challenges and I think we should all give ourselves a little extra grace and freedom to make the best of this new set of boundaries. I hope that I’m able to be extra thoughtful and gracious this week, and patient as we navigate these changing times.

Anything I should add to my goals for the week? Is the quarantine situation still novel or are you struggling?