So obviously we are all dealing with the reality that we are very much so in the middle of a real-life pandemic. Now, of course, as with anything, responses to something like this is going to vary. Everyone has their way of coping, and perhaps now more than ever, whatever that may be, we all need to practice empathy and patience. One thing I know for sure, two things have really stuck out to me in terms of a general response to what’s happening: 1. Faith and how people choose to express it and act based on it. 2. How we deal with anxiety amid chaos. Here are my thoughts.
Faith in the face of fear. I have a solid faith. I believe that God sits on the thrown and that He presides over everything. I believe that He has, in fact, built a hedge of protection around those who call upon Him. I believe in His miracle-working and healing powers. I also believe that He called us to use wisdom. My faith in him does not mean that I am absolved of the need to listen to the wise counsel that He has placed before me by way of doctors, scientists, and others who are informed and doing all they can to guide us to safety. It’s like the story about the person whose drowning calling for God to come to save them but refuses to get on any of the lifeboats that pass by.
God is sending help, it doesn’t matter if it doesn’t walk, talk or look like what you think it should, you should take the advice. The same goes for what’s happening right now. I know you are covered, and I trust that by His stripes, you are healthy and healed. However, to prevent yourself from getting sick or from compromising someone else, you must do the things that have been advised. Self-quarantine, social distancing, cleanly practices, etc. We don’t trust the government; we all know this, however here we are, and if they have some evil agenda with all of this, then that is when we are to trust God to be bigger than their plans. But putting yourself and others at risk is just foolish. Practicing precautions is not the same as living in fear, it’s merely using the common sense I want to believe that God gave you. Let’s not be so heavenly bound that we are no earthly good, saints.
Calm amid chaos. Now, if you are anything like me, you’re anxiety, even with all the faith in the world, has been on an uptick. It started for me when I realized that we needed to reschedule our vacation the day before we were set to leave. Trying to get ahold of the airlines and hotels was a nightmare and literally impossible. That was the first time I really felt my anxiety flare-up. Now, I deal with depression, but the anxiety was a bit new for me. I’ve been anxious before as much as the next person, but I’ve never really felt that level of tightness before. The harder it was for me to get through to someone, the more if flared until I finally just had to stop, take a deep breath, and step away for a minute. When I came back to it, I was able to think a little clearer and resolve the matter that allowed us to reschedule.
Similarly, I had my second bout with anxiety when I went into a grocery store on Friday before I left for a quick staycation. I know, I know, why on earth would I got into a store, but honestly, I wasn’t panic buying it just happened to be time for me to restock on a few things, and I wanted to make sure we’d have those things when we got back. I literally walked in the store after not being able to find a basket, grabbed a handbasket from the guy working there, picked up like three items before quickly deciding fuck this shit and walking straight out the door. I was incredibly overwhelmed by the people, the chaos and madness of it all. Just like before, when I’d gotten into my car, I took a deep breath and moved on to something else. Thankfully I had already ordered groceries to be delivered. On my way out of the store, I was reassured after overhearing a produce department employee tell another customer that they were still getting regular shipments and that we weren’t in danger of supplies running out. These are things that I already knew, of course, but you watch social media, you see the hysteria, and you can’t help but get a little anxious. The thing I learned in all of this though, is that no matter what’s happening, panicking is never gonna help you. It is okay to feel overwhelmed by it all because, hell, it’s a lot. The best thing you can do for yourself is to practice self-care by unplugging as necessary, watching constant coverage or seeing it on social media can only add to the stress of it all. Stopping, taking a deep breath, and walking away as you need. I know that everything you need to get done is a pressing matter, but your health is even more critical. Stress is never good for the immune system, and that’s whats most vulnerable right now. So you, if you need to, no matter the task, step away and regroup. Remember to everything, there is usually a solution. You will figure it out, it will get done. Everything will be okay. Some other ways to help with anxiety include:
- Writing in a daily journal.
- Meditation and/or working out.
- Step outside and get a breath of fresh air. As long as you are practicing social distancing, it is very okay to go for a walk.
- Group facetime with friends!! (one of my personal favs)
Use whatever healthy and safe coping mechanism to help you get through. It’s okay if you aren’t productive every sec of the day or heck for even a day or however long you need. This may be a time to reconnect with yourself, loved ones, etc. To rest and rejuvenate. Catch up on shows, read books, etc. The point is, find new ways to discover new parts of you that will help you not only get through but unlock new levels in preparation for the return of “normalcy.” This is a great time to regroup and prepare. Whatever you do, let is be rooted in calmness, no matter how chaotic the world around you gets.
I hope in all of this, first, that everyone remains safe and in sound health, of course. Secondly, I hope that WHEN we get thru all of this, that we’re remember what humanity felt like. Not from the government or the billionaires who are just fucking chillin but the everyday people who are working on the front lines in the medical and science industries, the service industry, and every other fantastic human that’s performed an act of kindness. Let us never take for granted our own health and being mindful of others. Let us remember what’s actual necessities and what we can live without. May it drive us to fight for what is right, not just in times of peril but for all eternity. Let us never turn back from cleanliness, amen!! Lol, but all in all, I hope this heals our planet, our nation, our hearts, and lights a fire in all of us to go after every single thing we desire like the world may end tomorrow. May you have faith in the face of fear and be calm in the midst of chaos. I know this is a lot, but take a deep breath, count to ten and know that you have what it takes to get thru this. I love you all. If you need me, I’m here!!