Coping with COVID-19 – Time Out

Time Out

If someone had asked me three months ago, what things concerned me about the future I would have talked your ear off about American politics and climate change. I could have gone on for hours over my concern for my country’s democracy; country over party; humanity; decency; and the value of telling the truth. T-R-U-T-H matters – who knew that that even needed to be said???.

Of the many, desperately important things on my mind three months ago, a pandemic forcing people world-wide to completely change course … well, that wasn’t even remotely on my radar. And yet here were are. Husband and I – and our adult children – are six weeks into sheltering-in-pace. We’ve left our homes only for our almost daily walks in the neighborhood or for grocery shopping. 

It’s almost like Mother Nature said, “Ok folks, time out. Go you your room and think about what you’ve done.” And so we have.

I find I can no longer watch the news. I find it stressful beyond belief and, when certain people talk, I actully feel my blood pressure rising. But that doesn’t prevent me from continuing to worry. When will we be safe again? What kind of world will we live in knowing that another virus can cripple us so easily and quickly? How will we be able to thank all those medical professionals who continue to place their lives in harms way for us? And those businesses that are still open and providing us with essential services. And what about all those businesses that won’t survive? And all of those people out of work? When will I have confidence again that our government actually knows what it’s doing and accepts that it exists to serve and protect us? When will I walk into the grocery and know I will be able to find toilet paper? Or yeast? 

If you’re anything like me — and I’m betting you are — many of those same thoughts, or your own versions of them, are running around in your mind. And that’s where truly taking a time-out comes into play.

Arting for Mental Health

When my friend, Jana, suggested on Wednesday that we Skype-art again, I didn’t even hesitate. We made a date for Friday and spent some time trying to decide what to do. We both had signed up for the same free class by Rae Missigman, A Guided Word at Jeanne Oliver’s site, so we decided to do that.

Neither of us liked what we created although I managed to salvage part of mine for a journal page. But you know what? It didn’t matter one bit! We laughed and we talked. We joked about silly things. We moaned and groaned about  how easy art demonstrations looks but how our’s never turn out well.  We compared paint colors and teased each other about how many supplies we have. I made sure she knew that it was 80 degrees in California when she told me she had snow in Illinois. We talked about my busy toddler granddaugher and Jana’s daughter’s upcoming wedding. We both agreed that making enough spaghetti sauce to have enough leftover to freeze was the way to go. Three hours were gone in a flash and we’ve promised that we will try to make our play dates a weekly thing.

This morning, first thing, Jana messaged me that she was so motivated she watched a Dina Wakley video and created a journal page!

All full of paint and scribbles and washi???  Well, you know, I couldn’t not to that same lesson too!

I’m grateful for a lot of things lately (like toilet paper, lol). But mostly I’m grateful that I have something (and friends) to turn to when I need to take a time out.

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  1. Su Hall

    My online friends are wonderful! We be: shooting the breeze, offering kind words, or even giving of information for things for which we share a common interest! The responses are exponential! If we could have just one glance at our ‘bread crumbs’ we’d see how far and wide the community stretches!
    Sharing my illness with friends lessens the fear considerable, too. I’ve shared the ups and the downs of being told a serious diagnosis – the denial, the anger, the sorrow… The support I receive from my friends is the most amazing thing to happen to me! It has made me a lot more positive and I’m actually doing better!!
    Online friendships are different. I find I ‘feel’ more for my online friends because all I know is a soul and a photo! I remember when an online friend had a tragedy in her family. I sat and cried like I had lost someone, too! When an online friend passed away, I couldn’t even go online for a couple of days. She used to say, “Til we meet on rainbows for tea…” I can see her there in my dreams! Sigh.
    On the other hand, the sharing of joyous things is special! You get the sense of how sincere everyone is being and it can make your day! Some of my most spiritual experiences, or revelations, have been with online friends.
    I can’t think of anyone better to weather this pandemic with other than some of my online friends! You being one of them, Vicki!
    Thanks for sharing your and Jana’s times together! These things bring joy!



    • Vicki Robinson

      You are such a very special person, Su. I’m so glad we’ve gotten to know each other. I think you’re one of the strongest people I know – and I keep you in my thoughts. Big (virutal) hug.

  2. Judy Clark

    Love this!!! Two Sundays ago a good friend of mine in CO (I’m in VA) invited me to a FaceTime game of Bingo. She had invited her daughter’s and grands from Utah & CO, as well as friends from CO & NC. She also invited my daughter & grandson who live about two hours from me. First let me say– I HATE BINGO!! But we had a wonderful time!!
    During these times, we all have to take our pleasures wherever we can find them. ❤❤❤

    • Vicki Robinson

      It’s so cool that you did that! Can you imagine how we would have gotten through this ten years ago without this kind of technology?


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