Isolation and a a change in the wind....
As we settle in for another day of self-isolation, I have been reflecting on what this epidemic means in the grand scheme of things.
I’m feeling that overwhelming sense of massive change that seems echoed from everyone. That certainty that life is never going to be the same again, whether the outcome are good or bad. We’re being forced to confront some of the “biggies” - mortality, social good, the helplessness of our national leadership and our heavily-consumerist American way of life. Funny, we're we find ourselves united in fighting a common foe these days - something we have nearly forgotten - that sense of all being “Americans” rather than filtering ourselves into tiny boxes of identity. I am hoping it beings us together as nations and as humans to change what needs changing and heal what needs healed in our world. Suddenly "stuff" matters very little, and the most important things on the to-do list suddenly disappear or don't seem to matter - all those "musts" are now "let-go".
Here in PA all schools and non-essential businesses are ordered closed for the next 14 days, we as a state are largely working from home, restaurants and bars only carry-out or closed entirely, gatherings over 50 people banned.
So much has changed, and yet for me, since I work from home, very little has changed in my day-to-day. I am getting more requests for writing work (so good there) but am struggling to share workspace with rest of family as they are home for the next 14 days or perhaps more. Elder child is a first responder working in rural Alaska - nervous for her, but she's healthy and young and they have no known cases so far.
As the days pass by in our little bubble, I’ve been re-connecting with friends who have slipped off the radar in the past few years via text. So far, this isolation has been somewhat of a blessing - allowing time for reflection, reconnection and the slowing down all of us truly need. We've been trying to stay positive, going on walks, doing work together around the house, playing games and talking - all things that fall by the wayside in the "must" of our crazy lives. It's been almost a min-break from reality...a "time of out time" in which to reevaluate and plan for the next small chunk of time.
Who knows what this virus will bring and what may change as the days move forward...I've been taking news breaks every other day and just letting the world ride without my active engagement - after all, unless it comes to my door (or my inbox), not much is going to change for me either way. It breaks my heart to see my community suffering, and as much as I would like to help, several of us here at Lady Dog Farm are also in the “at risk” group so out of an abundance of caution we’re circling the wagons and riding this thing out here. But, it occurred to me today that there is a way I can help - several actually - through this blog.
I started my blog as a way to share my learned experiences and the knowledge gained in living in some pretty crazy conditions. From living off-grid in an Amish house, to building our own home and living without running water or electricity for nearly a year, to just riding out blizzards and storms - I have a whole encyclopedia of knowledge about how to get through the toughest of situations. It dawned on me that I can help in this very situation by providing not just recipes, but stories to take people’s minds off of things, pointers on how to homeschool and keep teens engaged in learning, and how to cook with pantry staples. My entire life’s experience has been in preparation for moments just like this. As a writer, I feel it is my job to be a witness to history and to use my skills to help in this time of need.
I will be posting daily as long as the “creek don’t rise” - so to speak. If you have any questions or suggestions on topics, please feel free to click the “contact” link at the top of the page.
I wish everyone peace and health and sending positive energy to you all that you can find a way to find your silver lining in these dark days.