I hope you all have been doing well and staying safe amidst these times. To say that the past couple of months have been crazy is a drastic understatement. Schools are closed, bars and restaurants once filled with peoples laughter and conversation now silent, and hospitals are filling to the brim with people seeking critical healthcare. One of the things I have been doing a lot of, as I’m sure many of you are also doing, is constantly checking the news, seeing the numbers, and starting to worry. Now, I’m no doctor or scientist, so I won’t give my dear readers any false information or random speculation, but a few words of advice in this trying time, I feel, are helpful. This is some groundbreaking stuff, are you ready for this? Okay here we go:
1. Don’t go outside.
Seems pretty self-explanatory, I know, but the best way to flatten the curve of infection is just to stay in your house. I’m sure a lot of you who are reading this are already in your home but STAY IN YOUR GODDAMN HOUSE. Nothing is more important than your health, and more importantly, the risk you run of potentially infecting someone if you are asymptomatic. Read a book, do some yoga, smoke a blunt (assuming it’s legal). The quicker we realize we have to stay home, the quicker we can leave our house. Let that serve as a mantra for the next few weeks: Stay at home. Stay at home. STAY AT HOME. Otherwise, I’ll have no choice but to personally come to your home (Hazmat suit on of course) and beat the mantra into your thick, thick skull.
2. Don’t make yourself paranoid.
When I was first beginning to learn about this virus, I developed an anxiety over how I may be at risk. I meet a lot of people on a daily basis, and in working in food service as well as student service, I have a lot of close contact with people. When I heard that the governor was shutting down schools and bars, I was immediately worried about how much contact I have had with people, particularly the elderly. It also didn’t help that in the days following the stay at home order, I had immersed myself in learning as much as I could about the origin, spread and lack of medical supplies that were available. My advice is to ease up on news consumption. Don’t get rid of it completely, you don’t want to be completely ignorant to what’s happening in the world, but make sure COVID-19 isn’t the only thing you’re talking about with people. If you are going to be online, try to learn something new. I’ve been looking into video production and psychoanalysis in the time I am not studying, and I can say now is the best time to try out something new, if anything it will take your mind off of things, and will help ease some of your newfound anxiety.
3. Get organized.
As much as I mean get organized by tidying up your home, I also mean start building a stronger connection to your people. Undoubtably I can see that the biggest groups affected by this disease have to be the houseless and the poor, and not necessarily in regard to the chances of being infected. In the US, there is a drastic difference in preparedness when it comes to the poor vs the rich. A large majority of Americans have lost their job, but still have to worry about providing food, paying loans or student debt, and paying for medical supplies. That being said, banding together as a community to organize things like food drives or rent strikes is key in letting your voice be heard, and also empowering marginalized groups through unity. The best way to fight rhetoric is with action, and now, given the showing of the fragility of the system, is the best time to get everyone on the same page.
4. Learning to change.
Arguably the most difficult thing to accept, learning and accepting that life will never be the same is essential in overcoming these tough times. Arguably, following the initial peak of the spread, I speculate that social gatherings will be limited regardless. It is going to take a while for things to settle back down, for the anxiety to settle, and for all of us to move on. However, that should not take away from the fact that we all will overcome this, and even if we lose people along the way, we will lose them fighting for the life we want to live.
We will get though this, and hopefully, we will come out of this better than we did coming in, and with our eyes wide open to the injustices we truly face as a people.
Anyway, those are just a few of the things I wanted to say to you, dear reader. I hope reading this was not too much of a waste of time. In terms of what’s been going on with this blog, I am working on making a video essay, as I want to spread our work across multiple platforms, not just the blogging scene, so look out for that. I know I have been absent for a while now, but I was just in a different place mentally, so I needed to take some time to get back on track. I got some work coming at you soon, so stay tuned and stay safe.