When all this quarantine business started, I felt paralyzed. I didn’t know where to go or how to process my feelings so I just sat with it. Let’s be honest, a lot of the time I still feel that way. In recent days, I’ve realized that movement has been key for me. I move and I feel better, it’s as simple as that. So I decided to venture out and offer some virtual barre classes. I asked for $10 donations from folks if they could spare it. I told them not to pay if they or someone in their household is under or unemployed right now due to this godforsaken virus. I figured it was a nice opportunity for me to move my body, make a few extra bucks and connect to the incredible people in my world.
And then the payments started rolling in...one for $30, $25, $60, $15. So many members of my beautiful community contributed not just to me but to help support those around us who can’t swing the extra money for a class right now. It might not seem like a big gesture but to me, it’s everything. And then there was a sweet surprise left on our doorstep a couple of days ago. Some lovely humans from AG Fitness (where I’ve only worked for a few months by the way) all got together to send us instructors a gift card to Laney and Lu...one of my absolute favorite spots. I am still absolutely blown away. I don’t know if I can accurately describe how full my heart is.
A couple of weeks ago, like so many of us, my world got turned upside down when the businesses I work for and love were forced to close their doors. I myself am my own little small business as a fitness instructor and I immediately started worrying about the future, finances, and what might become of the industry that I’ve dedicated so much of my life and energy to. And just when I began to worry, you all showed up. Without saying a word, you reminded me that I have your support. With a small gesture, a click of a button, you gave me back my motivation. With your kindness, I know that we’ll all get through this together. So thank you.
In a time where we’re afraid of being too close to each other, I feel in some ways closer than ever to you all. Our love and kindness knows no bounds. Let’s remember that even in the darkest times, we can still support our friends and neighbors.
So let’s think now more than ever about where our money is going. Before we spend our cash at a big grocery chain, maybe we consider buying from the local farmer who is busting their hump right now to get fresh food to you. Or think about your favorite massage therapist or hair stylist and grab a gift card for yourself or a friend to use when we can get back out in the world. If you want takeout, let’s rally round those mom and pop places like Laney and Lu. When all of this is over, we want our favorite spots and small businesses to open their doors and welcome us back in. Trust me that Target and Walmart will still be standing at the end of this but how about all of those other people in your community who are completely adjusting their business models to continue to support us? Let’s wrap them up and show them how much we admire them and need them in our world.
So thank you for supporting me. I can only hope to repay it in the ways that I know how (mainly through cheesy jokes and funny faces). Love you, friends.
If you had told me I’d be titling a piece of my writing “Corona Diaries” years ago, I would’ve thought it would have been the tale of a summer night spent with light beer and limes. Perhaps it would’ve been a day on the sand with good friends laughing and sharing stories. But alas, it’s just me cleansing my soul because a virus has swept the world, leaving us all to second guess all that we ever knew.
I haven’t felt inspired to do anything until I started typing today. Sharing my feelings on social media feels small to me, laughing about it or trying to “stay positive” is absolutely infuriating. So I am left with myself, riding the waves of my feelings from one moment to the next. I find myself wavering between gratitude for quiet and stillness and absolutely debilitating fear. When I’m in the moment, I can settle myself but as soon as my brain starts going towards thoughts of the future, I start to freak. What will happen to my family? What if someone I love needs help but I can’t get to them because of exposure risks? What if the businesses I love and work for never reopen? What if the world as we know it never looks the same again? Well, I hope the world doesn’t go back to the way it was. I hope that at the end of this we find that our “old ways” weren’t working for us. I hope we never take our time together for granted again. I hope we all stay slowed. I hope when we hug our loved ones again, we remember that our connections are truly the only thing that matters.
So I’m not focused on politics or running workshops or coming up with new sequences for my virtual classes. I’m focused on checking in with the people that I love. I’m focused on checking in with myself. I’m snuggling my husband and my pups harder than I ever have and breathing in the fresh air outside with more gratitude than I’ve ever felt. I’ve been talking to the trees and rocks more. I’ve been asking my Dad up above (or all around or wherever he is) for his help. I’ve been looking for signs. I’ve shed a lot of tears and I know there will be many, many more. I’ve been burning sage like it’s my job. I’m not worried about money (there’s a first for everything). I’m worried about living. So each night as I try to fall asleep, I will keep my mantra of “we are safe and healthy” going. I will not be staying positive so please don’t try to come at me with that right now. I know we’re all coping in our own ways but for me, I need to be sad and frustrated and so full of love I can barely stand it. It’s where I’m at and I won’t deny myself of it.
I’ll continue to clean the shit out of my already clean house so that I feel some semblance of control. I’ll get on my mat most days because it’s familiar and makes me feel like me and I’ll be graceful with myself when I don’t want to. I’ll keep daydreaming of warmer days when I can get back out into my garden and feel the soil between my fingers. I’ll listen to the trees talk and admire the buds on my rose bush and remind myself that life continues and that nature is still there to guide us. I’ll keep kissing my husband and making up random songs about the irony of wiping down lysol wipes with a lysol wipe and being absolutely astonished that this is the new norm. I’ll laugh when I feel like it and not be quick to wipe my tears away. Now is the time for feeling.
So reach out to me and I’ll reach back. None of us are immune to this. I need you and you need me. Let’s be great friends through this. I love you.