Sunday, March 29, 2020

Quarantine - March 2020

Dan is in charge of our letterboard and this is what he came up with post-cute little winter greeting. I have already teased him because it is actually March rain that has brought the virus upon us. But you know what he means.

The pandemic reached into our lives about three weeks ago. With growing news about the nature of the Coronavirus and stories that we heard from friends beginning to experience it in the Seattle area, we erred on the side of caution and kept Dan home. You know, because of his cancer-wrecked immune system and the fact he is operating with basically one good lung. A recommendation from our sister-in-law, Dr. Rita, was also taken to heart.

We sequestered him away from the public, banning him from his favorite activity--grocery shopping (for real). His last public activities were a hearing aid check-up at Costco and a donut party at Raine's school, so don't worry, he was livin' the life right up to his immediate grounding. 

We spent that weekend only with family to celebrate Tom and Logan's birthdays at Tom and Rachel's. Come Monday the 16th, Shelter In Place for Illinois was really happening. I had my last day physically at work (Yes, I have a new job! In fact, I've had 2 jobs since I last blogged. Barista, which I loved but didn't work out, and now office worker/receptionist extroardinaire at ICC's Corporate and Community Education department. Maybe more on that some other day?) and Raine's school closed and began distance e-Learning. 

First things first when trapped inside indefinitely: Fresh flowers. Go big or go home (oh wait. you are home.) with your local florist. Thank you Le Fleur for being open with delivery!

So what is quarantine, and living in a world with an extraordinarily infectious disease, like for our family? A cancer stud, his GAD bipolar wife, and their only son?

Like everyone else, we have been living day-to-day, unsure when SIP will lift and life will change again.

Like only us, we have been living just like we did for two years with with Dan on disability and myself unemployed. The only difference is that Raine is home with us as if it were summer break. SO we are used to rubbing elbows and being all up in each other's business.

Our attempt at hearts in the window. I don't know what these are for or what they mean, but I saw other people doing it so I did it too. Raine was completely disinterested. Do you see a bear? Dan put a polar bear in the window, too. Because he heard people were putting bears in windows. (?)

Dan's business is pretty routine -- breakfast for Raine, a morning walk (Pokemon), listening to music and reading all day, checking in on social media and texts, cooking dinner, more reading or binging TV [ok. WHO watches 'forged in fire'. it is the weirdest.] On the weekends, alcoholic beverages are involved.

Raine's business is also routine -- breakfast, basketball, Nintendo, e-Learning, lunch, snacks, snacks, snacks, basketball, basketball, basketball, Nintendo, watching Youtube or documentaries about basketball, more Nintendo, dinner, Nintendo.


My business is typical. I sleep as much as possible; as much is allowable for a depressed adult. I snack and drink alcohol and stay awake long enough to participate in multiple basketball games, some binging TV with Dan, pay our bills, and check the mail.

UNLESS. Unless...! I put real pants on and drift through the day in a magical high. Because the switch flips. Oh the switch! I wish I could control it and make it flip to magic all of the time. I yearn to be off meds to feel the switch flip more! But I stay on my meds. This week the flip switched all on its own and gave me brief relief.

I step out onto the rain drenched porch and squish my toes

I watch the sky change
I bring home a plant that I believe I can take care of

I make sure Hobbes gets his medicine

...I cut those hearts and paste them
...I shop online and buy many, many things. Just things. Usually decorating things.
...I do laundry
...I do dishes
...I leave the house and take a walk
...I am a goofy, fun, exciting mom
...I stay awake all night and keep going the next day!
...Fix Raine lunch and snacks
...Fool around
...Write blog posts
...Enjoy music
...Call friends

My bipolar disorder feel so difficult to manage without the greater routine of going to work (getting out of the house) eating regularly, and proceeding forth in repitition without such a desperate need of motivation.

In this way, for me, the pandemic hits home with such awful disruption.


This guy wants to run for it outside.

As for my advice handling my GAD, I could probably write a new blog post, but for now: I feel better equipped to discuss.

I don't follow news. I live in EACH second. I don't move ahead or think ahead. I don't even begin to let myself get obsessed. Because I feel utterly bewildered by what to allow in our life or not, how much sanitizer to use, how life will move forward for my work and school, the fragility of Dan's lungs, the lack of control to be had over anything other than waking up and brushing my teeth...on a good day.

I know anxiety attacks will happen, come and go, breaking points and new breaking points. My advice is the antiquated but hopeful "This too shall pass." Every moment will pass. The heart palpitations, the icky feeling in your stomach, the shaky hands or eyebrow twitch, the racing thoughts? They will pass.

If you don't believe it, reach out. Ask a friend. They will tell you. I'm here telling you.


  1. One of my top 10 things of all time - is reading your words. I hope you will someday write a memoir, to share your beautiful artistry with the masses. I love you so much, one of my dearest friends, favorite people and coveted authors. Stay golden <3

    1. Thank you sweet friend! I love you too! xoxo