Relationships

How Are You Today?

I had a few different post ideas for this afternoon, but, honestly, what I really want to know is, how are you?

Tell me: How are you faring? What are you eating? What are you watching/reading/doing? What are the views from your windows? What is making you laugh? What is making you cry?

I’ve been getting emails from people around the world in different situations. One that has stayed with me: “I’m 30 and live alone in a tiny studio in NYC,” wrote a reader. “I desperately need a hug and physical human contact and don’t know what to do to handle that. Maybe I’ll get a weighted blanket? I’d love some solicitation for loving vibes!”

We’re hanging in there. We made zucchini muffins, watched The Talented Mr. Ripley and have been playing lots of rounds of Memory (Toby crushes it every time). We’ve also had major kid meltdowns and moments of what-is-even-happening, followed by times, usually in the evenings after the boys are in bed, where we feel more buoyed. These days are intense.

FaceTiming with friends and family helps so much. My psychologist friend Lina (remember her from this post?) said: “When talking to your parents over FaceTime or having a Google hangout with your friends, you’re going to get that emotional regulation that comes from seeing someone’s face. When you you lock eyes with someone you love, you feel calmer. Facial cues are so important and extremely healing.” So, consider FaceTime over a regular phone call, if you’re in the mood. I’ve found them so comforting.

Lina added: “It’s only going to get easier. We’re incredibly resilient as human beings. People return to their happiness status quo. We’ll adjust and get into a rhythm and flow.”

Here’s to that. Sending love.

How are you? What are you doing these days? What’s making you feel good? What’s hard? Tell us everything. (Side note: A bunch of readers said the book is even better than the movie!)

P.S. A 175-square-foot apartment and this made me laugh.

(Photo by Stefany Alves.)

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  1. Kirsten says...

    I’ve been taking Nia Dance classes online through my regular in-person instructor. They are saving me at moment. Sometimes I cry (hysterically during one class), sometimes I am joyful, and everything in between while dancing. It really moves emotions, and it’s so healing to feel all of it and let it out. Afterwards, everyone holds their pets up to their computers to say hello, so there’s been happy tears as well. Sending love out to everyone. Here’s to hoping this brings about change where it is needed.

  2. ez1019 says...

    I’m feeling really plagued by comparative suffering right now. As in, how can I be angry that my employer has an extremely low tolerance for me working from home, when there are millions of others whose employers had to furlough or terminate them? I’m attempting to keep perspective, I am really grateful that I’m still being paid, and I do have a great deal of empathy for others, but… why must I also feel like my distress or pain is less important? Can there be no empathy for all? I don’t want to be selfish or “tone deaf” as it’s popularly assigned these days, but… I also don’t want to stuff or swallow my pain as though it doesn’t matter at all. I don’t want my pain to be ranked or stacked up against others’. Who decided there’s a scale to determine whose pain is worse, and at what arbitrary point on the scale is it acceptable to express pain and be rewarded with empathy? I’m not selfish. I’m not without empathy for others. I just want to feel my feelings, too, and not feel guilty about that!

  3. N says...

    Is it ok to be really angry? Like furious?
    I’m angry at the Chinese government for not regulating the sale of wild animals!
    I’m angry at all of us who fly all over the world for meetings that mostly could happen remotely but we need to spend our companies money so that they can pay less tax to governments who therefore have weak public health systems.
    I’m angry that this leads to the spread of this disease to this my country South Africa. I’m so angry for all the immune compromised people (high rates of HIV and TB) who are going to suffer. I’m angry for the elderly who are the careers of our children and enable our youthful population to work. They have lived such difficult lives under apartheid and now must die alone in falling apart hospitals to this disease which has spread from a global network they have not been able to reap any real benefits from. I’m proud of our president who instituted a lockdown before any deaths as the infection rate rapidly rises, but still will not be able to prevent the thousands hopefully not millions of deaths to come from Covid19, the collapse of the health system and even deeper economic crisis. I’m angry at myself cushioned at home with my one year old not out there helping in some way, any way. I’m furious at the global politicians who are already trying to hoard medicines for their own populations.
    But mostly I’m completely heartbroken that a country ravaged by colonialism and apartheid on its knees and try so damn hard to stand, will now be felled onto its face in the mud because of a global system that ensures that we can continually feel the brunt of the crises but never fully benefit from the economic system that enabled it…

    • Emily J. Chandler says...

      Holy. Your words will undoubtedly stick with me.

  4. selby says...

    i’m great. really really great.
    i met the boy of my dreams the saturday before the world shut down, and we have been using this time to quarantine together, play board games by the fireplace, cook each other our favorite foods, and we even took a road trip last weekend to a national park!
    it will be weird to date in the “real world” once this is over, but i’m loving every second of it in this unreal current situation.

  5. Angela says...

    Amen from Indiana. I love this so much I screenshot it. We’ve got to change. This was our wake up call.

    We can’t go back, I won’t go back.

  6. Rusty says...

    Two thirds … yes, 2/3 of ALL the cases of Covid-19 in Western Australia are directly from CRUIZE SHIPS!!!
    This makes me very frustrated and somewhat angry.
    Floating germ factories that insist on docking at our ports when there are NO Australians on board!?! They should have ‘steamed’ directly to their home port (e.g. Germany).
    Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot. 🙄

  7. Mountaingirl says...

    I was unemployed and job hunting before this started and while I’m grateful to be healthy and safe, I’m worried about what this means for my future. I was already anxious about finding a job before this. I’m meditating daily and reminding myself that there are bigger issues at the moment and that everything will work out somehow or the other. Grateful for invaluable time with my family right now.

  8. JDH says...

    I was OK at first but now the loneliness is starting really to sink in. My husband is a physician working directly with COVID-19 patients. Meanwhile, I’m at home, 17 weeks pregnant, with our two-year-old. My husband has been self-quarantining for the safety of our family. For us, that means he sleeps in the guestroom and uses as a separate bathroom. He is also careful not to touch me or our son. I crave physical touch from my husband and I have no idea when that will be again. Some more parenting help would be nice too ;). I am proud of him but I’m feeling very cut off in all of this. For now I’ll just have to settle for cuddles from my sweet little boy. It’s a lot of work but I’m not sure what I would do without him.

    • Carla says...

      Thank you JDH for the sacrifice that you are doing right now for all of us. Thank you to your husband for working so hard for all of us.
      Hopefully it won’t be too long. Meanwhile enjoy all the cuddles of your son. Big hugs from my family to yours and THANK YOU! ❤️

  9. Jessica Osborne-Stafsnes says...

    Thank you for this lovely post… This is a scary time, but there’s such humanity and authenticity in these moments, too.

    Would you consider doing a self-isolation series from around the world? Perhaps something like you’ve done with the “Motherhood Around the World” series…

  10. Tracy says...

    A suggestion for how to show kindness and appreciation during this time: buy a gift card when you go to the grocery and give it to your cashier after checking out (and one to the person who bags your groceries too). They most certainly didn’t sign up for this and aren’t paid nearly enough for the service they are currently providing. Any way we can show love and gratitude helps not just the other person but us too. The more love I am able to show others, the less fear exists inside me.

    • JenniferinAustin says...

      I love this, Tracy. The idea, and the philosophy behind it.

    • Sophie says...

      I LOVE this idea. Thank you for sharing.

    • Holy cannoli, Tracy. This is so simple and so smart. I’m going to do this on my next grocery run and share the idea with all of my friends. Thank you.

  11. Sami says...

    I am feeling lost. In December I started a language class at the university and met a Syrian man who took my breath away. I am married with 2 kids and in the 11 years I’ve been with my husband, I have been completely faithful. I followed my heart and ended up falling deeply in love which eventually turned into physical love. Prior to the lockdown, we were seeing each other daily but are now separated. I’m at home with my husband 24/7 and I’m heart-broken. Because I’m missing my love intensely and because my feelings for my husband have changed so drastically that I have no idea what will happen between us. What a strange, beautiful, heart-wrenching and unexpected situation I find myself in.

  12. Beth says...

    I’m feeling overwhelmed and scared. And also deeply sad. I’m currently 8 months pregnant and we’re closing on a house today (a process started before the world blew up) and I wish I could be feeling the joy of this moment, but my brain is stuck on the dread.

    I keep going back to what will happen if I have to give birth (first baby) without my husband at the hospital? Once baby’s here, will we live in even greater fear that ever cough and sniffle is COVID19?

    I’m trying to remind myself that we’re doing everything we can right now. That we’re taking precautions and living in a state where the governor has been very proactive in his approach to management. Self soothing by eating mostly comfort food and only watching TV that never gets too intense (more recommendations welcome!).

    I hope you all are staying strong and healthy, wherever you are. We’ll get through this eventually.

    • Sophie says...

      I’ve found re-watching episodes of The Office and Friends before bed helps calm my mind so much. We also started Tiger King which is great if you need a real WTF sort-of-laugh. Love and hugs to you.

    • Erica says...

      I’m 38 weeks pregnant and all about the comfort food too… unfortunately everyone else here in NYC feels the same way and it’s getting pretty hard to find. I’m just trying to take one day at a time.

  13. Christine says...

    Here in Indiana we’ve been isolating for a while now, it’s still winter we had a beautiful snow storm yesterday, probably the last one of the season and somehow it felt like a glittery gift. The dad next-door went outside and made an incredible snowman, the main character from Frozen, it was so amazing I took a lot of photos and sent them to everyone. I’ve spent the last year and a half recovering from a couple of serious eye surgeries and I’ve had to isolate a few times already so I’ve already cleaned out all my closets and re-organized and darned socks and read all the books I wanted to read but never had time for. Like the entire Donna Leon series! In order. So I’ve gotten pretty good at self isolating, I just made 10 quarts of soup for my niece in law who’s going to have a baby this weekend we’re all worried for her it’s her first baby, it is breach and there are cases in our town and at our hospital. I feel bad she can’t just focus on the joy of becoming a mother for the first time. Maybe the onesie I got her that has a rooster on it will make her laugh. A fun thing we’re doing in my neighborhood. We are making hearts out of everything from old calendars, construction paper, to hand colored masterpieces by little kids and putting them on our front doors for the nurses, doctors, all the healthcare professionals who work long hours, in the hopes that when they drive home from a terribly long shift they might see that everyone in the neighborhood appreciates them. It would be really sweet on my once a week run to the grocery store to see hearts on everyone’s front door. The kindergartner across the street ran with the idea, he colored a dozen hearts for everybody and distributed them at front doors. So sweet, it made my day. P.s. New York, we feel your pain. Be strong.

  14. Ee kiat says...

    Hi, Joanna. Stay safe. Americans can get through this.

  15. AC says...

    I enjoy reading people’s comments and find inspiration in many. I myself am doing ok. I have anxiety and depression so this whole thing is not easy but I am fortunate to have a job that I can still go in for (property management) and to have family including a husband around.

    Work is dead and it is times like this when my anxiety goes crazy (because of boredom). On Monday my hypochondria literally convinced myself I had terminal breast cancer when all it was an infected hair follicle that had swollen to a lump because I kept touching it. I lost sleep and was crying nonstop and my husband stayed up with me till midnight. It sounds so nutty now….ugh…but when my mind is idle crazy things can happen!

    I am trying to force myself to stay busy to combat this. Reading these comments helps, coloring, writing, talking with my husband on skype. There are only two of us in the office right now and I am so happy that we are like friends and get along so well. IT is nice to have that during all this isolation.

    Well as for eating: frozen personal pizzas. I am normally very health conscious but gave myself a little pass during this time as its hard to find certain groceries right now. I also usually work out but stopped for now.

    Hmm I live in a house in the hills of a suburban town and can see turkeys walking on the hill in front and pine trees. I love it. I watch the sunset from my bedroom window or on my upstairs balcony.

    thank you for having this space to just vent! I love reading about how people are doing and send my love to everyone.

    • AC says...

      Also my work is doing a “social distancing pizza party” tomorrow. We each get a personal pizza and sit in the clubhouse of the complex at separate tables. I love the idea! I think it will help boost morale.

    • M. says...

      AC hopefully you still see this, but omg a few years ago I had the exact same panic about an infected hair follicle and convinced myself I had terminal breast cancer as well. I did not sleep one second that night. I thought, well, maybe at least someone will buy me tickets to the Taylor Swift concert coming up as sort of a make a wish present.
      The next day I was still terrified and with my sister, who asked me if i had been messing with the bump and thats why it was red and irritated, I started to shake my head no because I wanted her to take me seriously but then didn’t want to lie and told the truth that I had indeed messed with it a whole lot. She laughed at me for like 5 min which was sort of needed. I calmed down. And a few months later bought myself the tickets to see Taylor Swift even though I was of course completely healthy but I deserved it! Hope you are doing well. I just needed to share that i had the exact same anxiety attack, so you are definitely not alone there.

    • Ac says...

      Thank you m! Its been hard. I started up again with it today and made another video appt. its now a bacterial infection bc i wouldnt leave it alone. Again i was crying and shaking all morning and couldnt go inti work bc i was convinced i was dying of breast cancer. Luckily the dr said im fine but its hell to put onself through that and i go through this alot though
      Usually not to this level. Than you! I feel less alone in this knowimg other ppl deal
      With it too

    • Ac says...

      Taylor swift tickets sound awesome! I love her lol.

  16. Kristina says...

    I’m having good days and bad days right now. My heart goes out to those on the front lines of this battle — doctors, nurses, and even grocery store employees. I feel so awful for families who have been affected by this illness already.

    Right now, I’m feeling scared. I work for a major museum, which will have several rounds of layoffs if this (absolutely necessary) social distancing continues for a long period of time. I just made it through the first round of layoffs, but realistically, I’m looking at losing my job in a couple months. I’m watching it come on slow motion, this end to my career here that I’ve worked so hard for.

    I also have a two-month old. I’m adjusting to life as a mother, and I’m unable to get help from my at-risk parents or from anyone outside of my husband at the moment. I’ve been hearing infants are now considered at risk of complications from Covid-19, so, now in addition to worrying over my at-risk parents and elderly grandma, I’m so frightened for my daughter.

    • Meg says...

      I really feel for all you soon to be mamas. I am a mom of a toddler. First of all CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!! I think posting pics on your IG or facebook of your tummy in a non apologetic proud way might help? I could just cry for you guys missing out on the belly show offs and the snack runs BUT on the bright side-the thing I miss the most about being pregnant is the lying down watching Netflix and feeling her kick. You can at least do that. You can also avoid the struggle to get your shoes on? I’m reaching here. You’ll be okay! Life will keep coming and thank goodness for that. All the best!!

  17. Beth says...

    I’m a nurse in the UK, so the effect of the lockdown hasn’t quite hit me yet because life has continued just the same inside the hospital! It’d actually nice for me to still have that normality, even though you’re putting yourself at risk. I work in a leading NICU and as from yesterday, only one parent is allowed per day which much be so so hard! I’m just taking each day as it comes! Xx

    • Tricia M says...

      Hi Beth, I am also in the UK. Thanks for all the work you and your NHS colleagues are doing at the moment. One day at a time is all you can do.
      Perhaps everyone will become more mindful as a result? Take great care all of you everywhere.

  18. Mika says...

    I live in LA and have felt a major shift in my perspective over the past few weeks. It’s very easy to get caught up in the fast and busy life here, which I love – and I don’t want to make this sound like I’m enjoying the fact that there’s a pandemic outside – but this has really brought a new meaning of ‘gratitude’ for me. I’m extremely lucky to have a boyfriend of just over a year who feels like he was made for me, and grateful to be quarantined together. We’ve taken this very seriously since the beginning of March, started preparing then, and have barely left his apartment since March 13. I’m extremely grateful for my health, the health of my family, and grateful to live in a state that has also taken this seriously from fairly early on. I’m grateful to work in ecommerce and be able to work from home, at least as long as our US fulfillment center is operating. 

    All this said, my heart hurts for those on the front lines and I want to do more for those affected. I’ve been researching ways to go about donating and helping those in need, but would love any recommendations from this community as well xx

  19. J says...

    I found out I am pregnant (for the first time!) in the end of February, right before the pandemic really started affecting NYC (where I live). So I’m hormonal, sad, scared, and angry. I’m sad and terrified for what I think is going to be a tragic world-flipping 18 months or more. I’m angry that we have the dumbest human on earth in charge, making terrible decisions and lying to the country. I’m worried they don’t know enough about how this virus could affect an embryo and that I am statistically going to get it.

    And selfishly, I hate that this moment of my life that was supposed to be about celebration and nesting and excitement has turned into this. I crave random foods and my husband can’t go get them for me – a silly trope we were looking forward to fulfilling. I dread telling my family because it’s just going to make them so scared for me and this baby. My first prenatal appointment was postponed two weeks and my husband will not be allowed to be there. As of now, women have to give birth ALONE in NYC hospitals, without any support person. Will that be me in 8 months?

    I feel terribly isolated and scared for the world this baby might be born into, and I hate that there’s nobody who is NOT in this madness that I can vent to because everyone is exhausted and scared.

    Thank you for asking. :-(

    • LK says...

      I’m due in 6 weeks and feel this way ten fold. I’m sure all will be ok for you in 8 months! Hang in there!

    • Lindsay says...

      This really hit home. I am newly pregnant too and just reading about the “silly trope” you were looking forward to fulfilling made me cry. It’s not silly. I’m sorry. I’m with you!

    • Daisy says...

      Due next week and I’m right there with you. In NYC and my hospital is currently allowing one support person, but my OB told me to mentally prepare for the likelihood that they will ban all support people to limit last-minute transfers from other hospitals because there won’t be enough beds for all of us.

      Hang in there. This is temporary. I hope so much for you that you get to enjoy the fun parts of pregnancy — especially the silly tropes — and that by the time you deliver, not only will your support person be permitted to come with you, but you will have visitors and it will be everything you imagined :)

    • Wendy says...

      J, I have been thinking about you all day and have typed and deleted my comment multiple times because everything that I have to say just seems so trite at the moment. However, I think it’s really important that you hear someone say “Congratulations!” As it is for all of the other women who are experiencing what should be one of the most special times in their lives. I’m no doctor, no scientist, no government official. But I am a mother. And though I was not pregnant in this most bizarre environment, I, too, worried about everything under the sun. The only thing I know for sure is that you have to remain optimistic. Because most of the fears that we project into the future never occur. And the things that do… well, I am truly amazed by the strength and resilience with which we handle them. Passing those traits on to your precious child is the best thing you can do for him or her. Please know that while you are isolated physically, you are not alone. And I’m pretty sure Joanna allows venting in her comments. ;). As for the ‘dumbest human?’ Let’s ignore him for the moment and talk about the leader of your great state. His voice has been the calmest, sanest, most comforting one I’ve heard in all of this. I’m going to choose to cling to that kind of voice, and to the belief that everything is going to be okay. Perhaps even better in some way. Soooo…. Congratulations! I am so very happy for you. xo from afar

    • Rusty says...

      Could you FaceTime or Skype the appointment with your husband???

    • AJ says...

      I relate so much to feeling selfish because you’ve been robbed of joy you’ve waited so long for! I feel the same way about my wedding that’s supposed to be happening in July. It’s terrible to get something you’ve dreamed of for so long and not be able to enjoy it– and on the flip side feel you should just be grateful you and your loved ones are healthy. I’m sorry for what you’re going through.

    • E says...

      I’m due in 9 weeks and feel this so much! Showing off the belly, baby shower, bris, all of that has been washed away. And I so relate to what you say about not even having the ability to just vent and get that full sympathy. Wishing that things will be much brighter by the end of your pregnancy and that you can welcome your little one into a safer world.

    • J says...

      Hi, it’s J. Replying to my own post while crying over here because I just wanted to say THANK YOU to all of you who have posted such comforting and loving responses to me. I love this community (which I realize I have been a part of for 10 years now!). Thank you, to all of you, for sharing your pain and empathy. My heart feels for you too <3

  20. Genevieve Martin says...

    It’s an emotional rollercoaster, I’ve found pretty much every day I feel really different.
    Have been working from home and socially distancing for a week now in UK, yesterday was the first day of “lockdown” here where you’re allowed to leave only for food, to exercise once a day, or to go to work (thought should only be the “key workers”). I went for a walk at 6 and it was so so depressing just watching everyone wander round aimlessly, and it was stressful constantly having to dodge people to be 2m apart and I went home after 10 mins and burst into tears as it hit me what this means.
    But today we got out for a run early in the morning, glorious spring weather and far fewer people to dodge and I was in much better spirits. And I volunteered with the local council (government) to make up food parcels for vulnerable people at the weekend so I’m actually really looking forward to that as something to DO and to feel purposeful.

  21. H says...

    Thanks for the check-in, Jo!
    I am staying with my parents in Indiana, and we’ve been getting really into watching all the birds in our backyard. It’s so therapeutic to watch them going about their day, eating, coming back up from the South for spring – going about their life, oblivious to the chaos in our world.
    Yesterday we saw a male and female bluebird, and my mom and I watched them for about 20 minutes as the male checked out 3 of my mom’s bluebird houses.

    I’m about to start the book for the Cup of Jo bookclub (sadly all libraries are totally depleted, and my hometown’s library only has the physical copy – but of course they are closed).

    I would LOVE a consolidated post about board games – I know you’ve mentioned some here and there on the weekly wrap-up posts but I have no idea which posts those were and our family could use some new game ideas.

    Crazy situation in NYC – keep hearing about how crowded parks are which is not helping… sending hugs to everyone xx

    • Rusty says...

      Oooh….yes! Today I saw a pair of Rainbow Lorikeets (very colourful Aussie parrots) mating in our big Elm Tree! Hahaha… I never knew birds did it for sooooo long! 🤣 Not sure where they’ll nest…they need a hollow, so tomorrow, I’m going to ask my partner if he’s up for a special project and build them one from online plans for that species. :)

    • H says...

      oh my goodness, Rusty, that makes me smile!!! I actually just happened to move back from Australia and miss those lorikeets, king parrots, rosellas, and cockatoos SO.MUCH. It has made me start to get more interested in the birds here, even though they are different… Australia is blessed with the beautiful birds :) hahahaha love that you caught them in the act ;)

    • Rusty says...

      H: Yes! We live 200m from Perth Zoo and the Swan River, so massive amounts of burd life here. I love it soooo much!
      I’ve never seen them mate before. They mate for life.
      This pair has nested in a hollow in a Lilac tree next door since 2012, BUT, new owners cleared everything but a sick Frangipani and a Camelia from the property (it used to be full of bird shrubs and native trees.)….nothing to nest in or eat!
      It’s sad, because they look to nest in the same placd each year…it’d be like living in an apartment block, you go home and….no apartment block. Gone.
      THAT’S why I want to build a nesting box as the Elm tree loses all its leaves in winter (Autumn here now) and there’s no hollow. I scrambled around and looked today.
      So…we have another project.

    • H says...

      I lived in Melbourne the majority of the time but at the end of last year, work sent me to Perth for a few months. What a gorgeous city you live in – Rottnest was one of my favorite places I visited in Australia. Good luck with your project!!! Hope the lorikeets stay!

  22. Tracy says...

    I’m a new mom to a one month old so we were already basically self-quarantined for three weeks before everyone else. Just when I felt a bit more comfortable venturing back out into the world, everyone else starting quarantining. At times I feel lonely but I’m never actually alone. I’m a bit sad and lonely at the thought of not being able to attend new mom groups in person.

    • TJK says...

      My little guy is six weeks tomorrow, I was just starting to feel ready to bring him out, and to meet more people, that’s all shot now. We also decided to not let our parents come over for their safety and ours, it’s really sad. Meanwhile, my husband and I have been enjoying this time as a new family as best we can by snuggling the babe, cooking good meals and watching an excessive amount of TV (like ALL of Homeland.)

  23. T says...

    My husband’s in grad school and ironically, we were supposed to fly to New York City today for the final interview of a job he’s really excited about. We got the tickets several weeks ago before everything blew up and NYC became an epicenter of the virus in the states. I’ve had a calendar reminder set on my phone for it, and it has been a little sad to get dings from my phone this week saying, “New York trip in two days, 9am,” “New York trip today, 9am,” etc. Thankfully the company is having my husband complete his final interview online instead, but now there’s the anxiety of the economy crashing. It’s a small company—what if they decide not to hire in the end? What if they go under? I remember being a teenager and seeing all these young adults fresh out of college and struggling to get jobs due to the recession. I never thought I’d find myself in a similar situation: my husband graduating and finally ready to get a “big kid” job and settle down right on the cusp of a global economic disaster.

    So, I’m nervous. But at the same time, I know that everything’s going to be okay in the end.

  24. Beckwith says...

    I live in a rural town in the west. We’ve been home since March 16th, but it feels so much longer! My family includes one 68 and one 86 year old, so we’ve been taking this seriously since the beginning. It’s frustrating to see people acting irresponsibly knowing the risk for our citizens at large and my family in particular. We are doing well because we have fresh air and plenty of open space for long walks and hikes (if it would stop snowing every day or two!) But so many uncertainties on my mind. We own a small business, but it was hit hard in 2008 and barely survived. I can’t imagine if we’ll be able to make it thru this. We’re not ‘essential’ so we’re closed right now. We are just lucky to have some savings, but unemployment is not an option unless our Governor declares a state of emergency. Honestly the Federal Program of payments would be a tremendous help to us. Fingers crossed.
    I feel so strongly the desire to bake and cook comfort food for my family, but we started a Whole 30 just before this, and so I can’t! Such timing! :(

    • Genevieve Martin says...

      Beckwith, why not abandon the Whole 30 and cook what you are being drawn to? Be kind to yourself, maybe it’s what you need right now x

  25. Rusty says...

    I just ‘broke’. I’ve been holding it together, mostly for other people, a little for myself, but these comments…the sheer humanity of this CoJ Community…. GAH! Now I can’t see for the tears.

    Absolutely everybody is texting me and calling me in these so very troubled times…because I deal with a progressive, incurable, autoimmune illness and a fair bit of isolation on a regular basis and they’re seeking comfort and advice on how I cope.
    Well, right now, I’m coping by bawling at the insanity of fighting over flipping toilet paper while so, so many are helpless and so, so many are putting their lives at risk to help the sick and dying!!! 😳

    Before my illness knee-capped me and forced me into early self-funded retirement, I wrote for a living. One of my favourite ever projects was also one of my last and I ended up training teachers in primary schools, in how to teach the activities I wrote. The project was about tolerance, based on the top five religions in Australia and was for a day we celebrate in Australia each year: Harmony Day.

    I called the project “All Together Now”. It was publicly launched just before the 2000 Olympics, the Sydney Olympics.

    I chose a song to be the focus of the public launch and that song says it all! It says what you and you, you, you and you, are saying…here, in this magnificently supportive and real community.
    WE ARE ALL THE SAME.

    Please, have a listen and read the lyrics. I’ve not shared something like this before, but … really? Love. That is all.
    Thank you to infinity, Joanna, for providingthis outlet for us all and for not hiding from the elephant in the room when so many others are.

    Check it out:
    https://www.metrolyrics.com/absolutely-everybody-lyrics-vanessa-amorosi.html

    • Rusty says...

      Hhhmmm….seems to be glitched.
      Thelyrics are there though and it’s all about the words. x

  26. xina says...

    After 28 days in our microcosm I feel like I’m on a swing.
    Serene days alternate with moments of extreme anxiety and unfortunately this also applies to my teenage daughter.
    Yes, it’s true. We have the opportunity of spend quality time togheter.
    Yes, it’s true: ‘let’s take back our lost time’
    But when I’m alone in the night the terrible numbers of this horrible odyssey shake me deeply.
    With love and hope. Ciao from Milan

  27. Nina says...

    I don’t know how much longer we will be quarantined for. My husband is a doctor so he is still working, which means I don’t have him to help and also we have to be extra careful with isolating ourselves. I should be having a horrible time because I normally work full time and now I’m tasked with taking care of my kids and the house full time with no help and no break. But, one week in, I love it. My husband and I are trying to figure out how I could go back to work as soon as restrictions lift (I’m a dentist so going back to work is going to take a LOT of planning and new protective protocols). I thought I would look forward to going back to work, but I am dreading it on a profound level. I don’t want to leave my kids. I’m better with them than I thought I would be. But I own my practice, and giving it up isn’t an option. I hope someone reads this and can respond. I just need to feel like I’m not alone.

    • abby says...

      Nina! You’re not alone! My husband and I are switching off childcare duties and concentrated work time. I am loving the time with my kids, and I have never wanted to be a stay at home mom. We’re going on outdoor explorations to find flowers and bugs, making indoor forts, reading sooo many books, coloring, and laughing. I am so much more patient. I too am having a really hard time imaging letting these things go whenever we get back to the more normal work rhythms. That life was so busy and hectic. I have no advice but only to let you know you’re not alone. I hope the best for you and your family and extend my sincerest gratitude to your husband for being on the frontlines and to you for being the partner/co-parent of someone who is on the frontlines. Both very hard things.

    • Christy says...

      Nina, it’s heartwarming to hear how much you love being with your kids, and that you’re even better with them than you expected. What a warm affirmation of your mothering! I wonder if you could find a way to keep owning your practice, while finding dentist partners who could gradually take more hours than you. Perhaps you could keep your hand in practice, over the long term, and still spend increased time with your kids. Whatever you choose, all the best to you as you make decisions about your practice and your family going forward. And our gratitude to your husband!

    • Tiffany says...

      My family thought I was nuts when I cut back to part time after all the time and money I had put into my education, but it was the best decision for me. I will never regret spending time with them while they were little. Seeing the world anew through their eyes changed the way I live my life, made me more grateful and observant, and was the perfect choice for our family. We expected to take a financial hit, but because I’m fresh and excited to be at work, I’m very productive and make the same money as our full time associates. You may not be able (or even want) to stay home after this crisis, but maybe you can find a way to share your office with another dentist mother and have the best of both worlds. I pray for your family’s health and I second the thank you for your husband’s efforts.

    • Julia says...

      I too am loving this time being home with my kids. I work part-time but life (pre-quarantine) still felt super hectic. I took some time off for the kids spring break and it coincided with the quarantine – so I am loving the time with them. I do have to go back to work next week quarantine or not. My husband and I are both physicians and I work part-time because he has crazy irregular hours (he is an ICU doc). I stayed home for a year after my second kid was born and I went a little nutty. Going back full time felt absolutely crazy. So now working 3 days a week has been my happy medium. I know not everyone has this privilege – I am lucky my husband prefers to work full-time and his work gives us health insurance. And yes, I am still very slowly paying back med school loans (got another 60k to go). But I feel like this time with my kids is so precious and fleeting to me.. Also I think this part-time schedule has kept me from burning out at work like a lot of my colleagues.

      Is there any chance u could hire a partner to split ur practice or maybe just do it 3-4 days of the week? It’s not an easy decision or transition but you will figure out what works for you. I wish u the very best in that decision.

    • mado says...

      I have worked occasional freelance since my four year old was born, mostly spending my time at home with him, but even I am finding myself more patient and present since quarantine (a week and a half in Ecuador). I truly truly hope we can all find a way to be less busy and harried after this, in whatever way that means for you. I think our world would be better for it.

    • Ibti says...

      Surely you can work part-time if it’s your own practice? I found working part-time the best of both worlds. I am happy to hear former full-time working moms are enjoying their time at home! It is a blessing.