It feels both shorter and infinitely longer than two months since we all started sheltering-in-place (although two months is an average, some started sooner and others later depending on where they live). As Rose discussed on Friday, it is hard to know what “normal” will look like as restrictions are lifted and it is hard to know how it will feel to begin doing the things that were dangerous just a few weeks ago. Coping, now, means that we are both coping with the restrictions but also with how to respond when the restrictions are not longer in place.
Ellen: There are many people out and about here, some with masks but many without. We had an incident at a local business where an employee was assaulted for asking a customer to wear a mask before entering.
As my family and friends begin to relax restrictions I’m being asked to meet up, but due to health issues putting me more at risk, I’m having to decline invitations; this has been difficult after 9 weeks of isolation.
I’m taking things day by day, even moment by moment at times, while watching the numbers and hoping cases don’t spike in my area.
Laura: I’d say that here, in Utah, people are acting like it is back to normal. When grocery shopping this weekend, I was almost the only one wearing a mask, with the exception with the store employees. On one side, I’m hopeful that this (resuming normal life full-force) is all okay. My climbing gym opened on Friday and the pool today, both by reservation only, and I’m so excited to go. But I’m also scared that we are going to end up in a worse situation than before. Selfishly, I just don’t want my pool and climbing gym taken away from me. I can understand why people just want to get out – I do too! I just don’t trust that it is safe without precautions.
Otherwise, work stress is at a peak coupled with financial stress, and last week was one of the worst weeks so far since the pandemic began. My stress is just at an all-time high, but having my two best coping mechanisms, swimming and climbing, back, will hopefully help.
Monetta: Well this week was especially difficult for me because as soon as the asthma was getting better there was smoke at night during the curfew. Even though I wasn’t able to get much work done I as able to think about what direction my business should take and do some networking on YouTube. I was able to grow my subscriber base from 120 to 250 in two weeks while lying in bed. I am learning so much about how to grow my YouTube channel. You can find me here.
I too worry about people not taking the necessary precautions. People have been visiting my grandmother and generally disregarding safety precautions. Most people understand that I need to stay safe because of asthma except the men who are trying to date me who keep offering to come “visit” me. Luckily the last official covid patient had recovered so we are technically covid free. The country will be opening up on Monday with lots of restrictions. The curfew is reduced from 10 hours to 8 hours and businesses will be allowed to operate after certifying through the government that they have the necessary precautions in place. Social distancing still applies. Schools and resorts may open in a limited capacity in June.I am afraid that as we reopen people won’t follow precautions. I am at risk because of my asthma so I will be isolating some more even though I just want to go hug my nieces and nephews.
Rose: I am slowly trying to do some exposure therapy like running on the trail and pulling up my buff over my face when I will be too close passing people. So far it’s been ok. Some people seem to give me weird looks or not say hi in passing because I am covering my face. I have been able to do some open water swimming so that helps me feel like I can work toward whatever races don’t end up cancelled. The course has been changed for my September Ironman so I am working on processing that.
We’re not going back into the office super soon, so I’ll just keep working from home and don’t need to worry about that. I’m just trying to keep everything balanced and not let fear win but also approach things logically based on the best available information
Ciara: This is the second week back at work for me, and next week there will be further relaxation of the restrictions. A lot more businesses will open up and we can now go to the beach for 2 hours in the evening not just from 6am-9am. We have an alphabet system whereby we can only go to the supermarket and bank on allocated time slots on allocated days according to the first letter of our surname; this is still enforced however it has been changed to the whole day not just an allocated time slot. We still have a few new cases presenting. Some people are social distancing and wearing masks and some are not. Most businesses have been implementing protocols, however some, like hairdressers, are operating even though they should still be closed. Two girls who were staying next door to me, whom had just come to visit but got stuck (because they closed the borders) managed to get on a flight to Peurto Rico which was repatriating Americans.
How are you coping? Are your neighbors still practicing social distancing? Wearing masks?