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  • erinschrode

Do What Feels Right!

You don’t NEED to do anything right now. I see so many people pressing that THIS is the time to write your masterpiece, launch your series, learn that new skill, perfect your six pack, maximize every single second. Friends and strangers alike often ask what *I* am doing, prefaced with the fact that Newton discovered calculus and the laws of motion and Shakespeare wrote King Lear while in quarantine during the bubonic plague. Well, good for them!

I’m a human being living through unprecedented times — and so are you. We’re not machines. And I am far more focused on being, living, healing, experiencing, inquiring, processing, connecting, surviving than feeling compelled to do do do, grind grind grind, go go go, produce produce produce. This time is not a bootcamp or professional accelerator, nor a free-for-all or vacation by any means. It doesn’t have to be a binary between burning out or vegging out. There are enough challenges posed to our physical and mental health from the virus itself, the veritable risks, the economic devastation, the social distancing, the orders to stay home, the financial upheaval, the widespread fear, the routines eliminated, the supply shortages, the medical system capacity, the rising unemployment, the multitude of widespread stresses. I cry. I laugh. I crumble. I relax. I throw my hands up. I dance alone. I exist. I persist.

I don’t know about you, but I’m struggling, I’m confused, I’m hurting, especially with the countless unknowns around this deadly global pandemic with exponential growth here in my state and country. Hours can pass without feeling I’ve accomplished much of anything at all. My days mostly consist of cooking, writing, tweeting, conversing with friends on FaceTime, talking with my momma, staring out my window, walking on my mountain (thank you, nature!), watching documentaries, reading books, playing board games, washing dishes, doing laundry, rearranging my closet — glamorous, I know. I sometimes change my clothes and shower, but truthfully, it’s not a daily occurrence. I work when able, and am happy to be coordinating the feeding of kids in our community and offering my assistance to others where needed, but the majority of my work has been all but entirely brought to a standstill, yet another layer of acute stress.

Regardless of what, you DID something today. You’re here. You made it through. That is what I remind myself. And if you’re in a safe home with a charged device on which to read these words, you’re doing alright, even though that may feel far from the truth amid tumult. Imperfectly navigating new realities, conquering unfamiliar emotions or pausing to sit, to think, to be is not a waste of time, indicator of weakness or sign of failure. It’s normal, welcome and healthy, in fact. This TBD Coronavirus period doesn’t NEED to yield anything concrete, especially not a few days into who-know-what. But it can indeed be an opportunity for anything. Focus on what matters to you. Use your energy wisely. Tune into and take care of yourself. Do what feels right. Do you!


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