While Spring Rain Falls, Musing On How I Feel Now

A prismatic spectrum of colors resulting from last weekend’s sun shining through beveled glass onto neutral chair fabric. Cool huh?

What a wet week it has been so far.

After a lovely sunny weekend that suggested Summer was here, we’ve been inundated with rain.  Constantly.  The kind of rain that brings flash floods.

Spring is back and says *HA!* fooled you, sucker.

My gardening projects are on hold because I don’t do mud.

Plus I’m a mellow woman so I’ll get to weeding + planting + trimming in due time.  It’s not like the flower beds are going anywhere.  Even with the threat of flash floods I think our yard is safe.  It won’t be washed away.

Thus instead of being outside in the garden I’ve been sitting inside our screened-in porch observing the weather, watching the gray sky above, noticing the monotony of falling rain. This has put me into a contemplative mood about these last few months.

The great pause, as many are calling it.

These long days during which many of us are not doing what we thought we would be doing this Spring.

I find it trippy to realize that everything in society is being transformed around me while I sit at home waiting to see how these changes will affect me and my relationships and my lifestyle.

This colorful and smart graphic clearly demonstrates all the feelings I’ve gone through in these last few months. You too? [Click on graphic to go to source.]
On the one hand I feel completely insignificant.  Passive, even.  Just waiting, twiddling my thumbs.

However on the other hand I feel *hell to the yes* I’m doing something.  I’m actively holding it together in the middle of a pandemic.  I’m demonstrating a bit of grace + tact + cooperation while feeling wistful about, but not dwelling on, what was normal.

A normal we’ll never see again.

I accept that life is different now, but what I think it means for me, how I feel about it?  Well, my feelings are all over the place while the hours pass and I muse a little more.

Waiting to get into the garden, and my life, again.

~ ~ ~ ~ 

QUESTIONS OF THE DAY

How are you feeling about these last few months? 

Do you find yourself going back and forth, up and down, hither and yon with your feelings?

How do you hope to feel in the future?

~ ~ ~ ~ 

Published by

Ally Bean

Observant. Humorous. Adaptable. Charmingly cynical. Midwestern by chance. Kindhearted by choice. Fond of words.

164 thoughts on “While Spring Rain Falls, Musing On How I Feel Now”

  1. You have really captured it, Ally. And while you had your rains and your mud, here, snow wanted one more “Hurrah”. You’ve also reminded me I don’t sit and ponder anymore. I want to, and I keep thinking I do (or will again tomorrow) since I did for so long, but I actually don’t. Nor have I been journaling. Hmmm. Methinks I’ll ponder that a bit. Here’s to getting back to our gardens and the wonderful resulting achy ness

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    1. Janet, thank you. I had a realization that even though I was just sitting on the porch, I was musing on these last few months, allowing myself to be still and think about how my feelings have been all over the place. And that I was ok with that, even though it wasn’t my preference to be sitting there and feeling all the feelings. I long for the achy-ness that you mention.

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  2. It feels like we’ve had cold, wet days for weeks now, and for the rest of the week we are finally going to have warmth and sunshine. My mood has been lifted accordingly 😀

    I admit that emotionally I’ve been all over the map, including days when I felt like I could cry at the smallest thing. I agree that the normal we used to know doesn’t exist anymore, and likely never will.

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    1. Joanne, our weekend was a tease. I thought we’d finally got to Summer but then gray sky and rain and cool nights again. Good for the plants, but wearing on my soul at this point.

      I don’t know what the new normal will be, but I realize that I’ll have to get with it if I ever hope to leave the house again. And do the things. And, you know, live my life.

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      1. We’re on a roll right now – sunny skies, warm temperatures. Everything is exploding into life … including my allergies 😏

        On beautiful spring days like this, it’s easy to think that life is grand 🙂

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  3. Ah the big question – how do you FEEL about it? I’ll check out the Feeling Wheel, thanks for including it, and the picture at the very top is so way beyond cool, it’s hot.

    The days go by – and here I’ve got stuck. I don’t know what to say. This zeitgeist has still to be felt into by we mere mortals. The old consciousness doesn’t work anymore. I reckon the best thing we can do is to be with particular time as best we can, while not jumping out of it too soon. Stay in it, sit with it. As to your question how do I hope to feel in the future? That’s another biggie. Hope for the right thing maybe, thinking of TS Eliot and The Wasteland.

    Thanks Ally Bean, happy planting and gazing …

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    1. Susan, I liked The Feeling Wheel when I saw it. I have something similar, but not as well done, from decades ago when I was an English major in college. I’m glad you liked it enough to print it out.

      Your words are what I’m thinking, too: “I reckon the best thing we can do is to be with particular time as best we can, while not jumping out of it too soon.”. Waiting, however, can get tedious, as I’m sure you know.

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  4. I hate to admit it while so many others are suffering, but the lockdown pandemic viral plague really hasn’t bothered me all that much. Yes, it’s inconvenient, and I do miss traveling, eating out and social gatherings….but we’re blessed with financial security and a big enough property not to feel hemmed in. I tend to take things as they come. This too shall pass is my general motto.
    😉

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    1. Rivergirl, you’ve a good perspective on all of this, both with your attitude and your hunk of land. I realize that Z-D & I are fortunate, too. He continues to work from home, I continue to do whatever the heck it is I do… but the rain took the spunk out of me, I guess. I’d like to get on with garden, my life… without complications.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. We had that non stop rain as well. Along with gale force wind earlier this month. Tres depressing. Spring was a long time coming this year. Heck, it’s almost Memorial Day and our trees are just starting to leaf.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Our rose bushes haven’t one rose on them. By this time of year I should be outside snapping about a hundred pics of the flowers. Yet, here I am quarantined and flowerless. *meh*

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  5. I suppose my primary feeling has been frustration: particularly, frustration that I haven’t been able to visit my aunt on her birthday, or spent time with a best friend in another town. I’ve been frustrated and grumpy that I missed most of the spring in my favorite places. Other than that? I’ve not been fearful, or depressed, or much of anything else. The first anxieties that came with food shortages and such have ebbed away, and now? It’s hurricane season! That’s normal as can be!

    I think a lot of the talk about ‘normal’ never coming back, or a ‘new normal’ taking over is overblown. I suppose that depends on what an individual considered normal in the past, of course. In many ways, my life is back to what passes for normal around here. I’m going to the you-pick-it farm for peaches and tomatoes before I head to work today, and having lunch with a friend at our favorite taco truck. I’ll invoice a customer, and decide which bills will get that money. If that’s not normal, I don’t know what is!

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    1. shoreacres, you speak for many people when you talk about being frustrated by NOT doing the social things you want to do. I wonder in the end, when this becomes a memory, if that is what everyone will remember the most about the great pause: what didn’t happen instead of what did happen?

      Your life sounds very normal. I haven’t been anywhere social for months now and with my husband working from home, neither has he. I look forward to doing a few things, moseying around a store, stopping for a coffee inside a shop. Nothing big, but what would for me now be considered normal. Whether that is new, I don’t know.

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  6. I absolutely LOVE your beautiful, colorful picture! We are finally getting much needed rain here. It’s been the best spring in a long time. We generally go from cool temperatures to blazing heat. I too, have gone through all of the emotions. And worry for our mothers far away from us that we can’t even go to see. I worry for the children who need to be in school. We cannot go on keeping everything closed down. Things are definitely not goung back to normal. We’ll just have to be patient and wait to see what the future holds. Best wishes to you and Zen Den in this crazy time!

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    1. Beth, I took that photo with my phone camera not expecting to see that result. Fun, huh?

      You raise good points about what needs to get back to, if not normal, at least going again. The problem is how do we as a society do that safely? Some parts of the country are jumping into life again, with scary deadly results.

      I know what you mean about not seeing your mothers, in my case MIL. It is odd to wrap my head around how she is safer by being isolated from us, than near us. Crazy times, indeed.

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  7. I’m pretty much in the same camp as Rivergirl. Apart from not being able to see my parents, I’ve been more at peace than I have in years. That said, I certainly feel for those who have lost everything they’ve worked for, but I do believe the America spirit is strong enough to come back. I hope all of your readers will consider donating to their local food banks. There are people like many of us who’ve always lived a comfortable life, but now finding themselves waiting in line to feed their family…it’s heartbreaking.

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    1. Jill, some days I’ve been at total peace, not worried about anything. Then other days anxiety takes over and I get sad or irritated or confused about what to do next.

      You make a good point about how the food banks are in need of donations. I think that’s a constant everywhere in this country now. Heartbreaking is right. So sad that our lives have come to this during these last few months– or perhaps more accurately, years. 🤨

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  8. You know I have good days and I have bad….I bought a pair of shoes last month (on sale a pair I wanted) and when I got them I spiraled about when was I actually going to wear them and it took me three weeks to actually open the box…so there’s that. Thanks for asking

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  9. I take solace in the relatively simple life we chose to live, as it has helped us weather this “storm” and will allow us to live as we do whatever the future may hold. And I’ve decided I want a full-time life in short pants, though that is still a ways away. The “Great Pause” has been, in part, “retirement practice” and while I still have some habits to develop (WALK, for the Love of God), I will develop those habits like it is my job. Because it will be.

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    1. Zen-Den, you’re right that this has been retirement practice for us. We’ve done pretty good at not getting on each other’s nerves. I hope that in real retirement we can be more spontaneous about doing things. That’s what I miss the most at this point. I am, after all, a free spirit!

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  10. I mentioned to LA that I am resigned, for lack of a better word. Life is fine, I am busy because I continue to work and I can do most of what I did prior to all the change. I don’t think too much about long term, although I know I need a lot less than I imagined and practicing for that has been a good thing.

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    1. Deb, I like your idea of being [attempting to be?] resigned to the changes to come. I can accept some changes gracefully, others I’ll have to see. The first major opportunity for change for the better comes in November. In the meantime we hang in here, at home, still…

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  11. I’m definitely a hither and yon person myself. My emotions run the entire range. Sometimes all in an hour. Throw in an ill cat that eventually passes and this pandemic will go down in my book as a most awful time although I’m less affected than most. I didn’t lose a job or have a vacation cancelled. I love my husband enough to be around him 24/7. I’m hoping that once there is a vaccine and treatments that work, some level of normal will come back. Maybe not for everyone but for the healthy ones. Right now I’m amazed by the level of stupid I see.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kate, I agree with you about the level of stupid. It’s everywhere and while I firmly believe that you can’t cure stupid, I don’t want it anywhere near me. I don’t know if it can go viral, but I don’t want to take a chance.

      I’m pleased to know that I’m not alone with my hither and yon feelings. I get what you mean about how in one hour you can experience all the feelings. In that timeframe I can’t begin to name them, let alone claim them– as we are counseled to do.

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  12. Enjoyed your post and am happy to have found your blog!

    Life has been feeling surreal these last few months. I miss my grandchildren terribly! My feelings are fluctuating from anxiety to gratitude. Anxiety because I am in a high-risk group. Gratitude because we have an income and the means to have our groceries and necessities delivered. We do go out in the woods for long walks and that is a blessing. My heart aches for those who have lost loved ones. Feelings ebb and flow…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Barbara, welcome. Thanks for commenting.

      You’ve summed it up perfectly with the word: surreal. I fluctuate between those two feelings, also. I have none of the high-risk factors, but my husband does so we are being super cautious. I’d like to go for a walk in the woods, but have to make do with a walk around our subdivision. It’s not awful, mind you– just not as inspiring and relaxing as nature.

      I, too, feel for the ones who have lost family and friends to this awful virus. There is such a sense of unfairness about everything associated with COVID-19. Did it have to happen like it has…?

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  13. When I arrive at your post, there are so many comments. So I wonder, where have I been?

    All I can think about is needing rain in Florida. Rain falls around us but not ON us, at least not yet. Mama says, “Be happy with what the good Lord gives!”

    I’m actively holding it together in the middle of a pandemic, you say. Good for you!

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    1. Marian, I’ve found that many early bird commenters follow this blog. I used to post in the afternoons but after looking at my stats realized I have the most views between 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Go figure, huh?

      The whole rain, rain, rain situation is pure Spring, taking delight in being difficult. My brain understands why it is good, but my heart needs a lift that only Summer can bring me. Hope you get what you need down your way, soon.

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  14. For me, the past few months have been about recovering from surgery and side effects. Regaining my health has put me in a pretty good mood, honestly. Plus we have great weather (though we really need rain). This keeps me cheerful, too. So, I just try not to feel guilty about feeling so good.
    The future? Well, I do hope I can take a research trip later this year and meet some cousins. We’ll see. I dread to find out how many local businesses couldn’t weather the pandemic.

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    1. Eilene, oddly enough you may have timed your surgery perfectly for recuperating at home. It’s not like you could go anywhere safely, so why not take advantage of that and groove at home? We’ve tossed all travel plans aside for this year. I’m bummed, but realize staying healthy is important and travel sounds like a huge hassle right now. And in the future. New normal and all that.

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  15. Largely, I feel Stuck. Like I can’t make any forward progress because I’m Waiting. Waiting for the weather to stabilize, Waiting for there to be a breakthrough in this pandemic, Waiting for Life to settle into some sort of Something That Feels Routine/Normal, even just for now. Yes, there are still Happinesses, and I’m fine, but there’s this sense of No Traction.

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    1. nance, yes, you’re right about feeling stuck. We are waiting all the time, filled with uncertainty as we do. It tires me. In fact that’s why I’m looking forward to working in the garden because I’ll see progress immediately. Plus seeds + time + sunshine = something new to enjoy. Just getting on with things has an appeal right now.

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  16. I’m in the same camp as Jill & Rivergirl ~> calm, peaceful, accepting, thankful, grateful, serene. It’s been a relief not to have to “go, go, go” and “do, do, do” all the time (especially since TP is still in short supply).

    That said, weathering the pandemic would have been MUCH harder . . . if my parents were still alive and missing me . . . if I had young nieces and nephews that I wanted to visit (instead, we’re ZOOMing 1x a week with the 19 members of my family). . . if I had had a “trip of a lifetime” planned or just a short road trip I was anxious to take . . . if I had lost my job or my health insurance . . . if I couldn’t put food on the table or pay the bills . . . if someone near and dear had been diagnosed with covid-19 . . . if I had wanted to attend my college reunion this year . . . if I enjoyed eating out and/or attending crowded entertainment venues . . . ETC.

    So I’m grateful, with a touch of compassion for those who aren’t in my boat.

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    1. Nancy, overall I’ve been ok about staying at home realizing how lucky we are to be able to do so. I am an introvert after all. I haven’t missed socializing or being on the go, like you mention. That is a relief to not do.

      What I have missed is spontaneity. I don’t usually plan my life this much, trusting myself to get things done in my own way. Now however we’re planning meals ahead. And planning how to get plants to use in the garden. And planning what we’ll be watching on TV.

      My free-spirited self is getting tired of the burden of being a planner. ‘Ya know?

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      1. I hear ya. Going with the flow and being spontaneous are important to me ~ I hate to feel hemmed in. An example:

        Yesterday afternoon, I wandered into the kitchen to refill my glass of water. I saw the empty lettuce container on the counter (which we’d emptied and washed out at lunch). I decided to put a new head of lettuce in the container. When I got the lettuce out of the drawer, I saw the carrots and celery and decided to prep a few of each for salads. As I prepped the celery, I realized that I had cut off a few too many ribs to fit in our designated “salad fixings” container. I knew that I wanted chopped celery to make chili (today), so I chopped it up. While chopping, I decided to just go ahead and make the chili. I got out my recipe, gathered the ingredients, and got everything in the pot and on a simmer.

        And THEN (90 minutes after going to refill my glass of water), I returned to my office with my water in hand. 😀

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        1. YES! That’s exactly my approach to life around here. I go where the mood takes me. I get things done but I don’t plan everything like I had to do when I worked. I know what has to be done on time [pay the bills] but after that I do things more in the moment like you did with your 90 minutes in the kitchen go with the flow experience. I’m not profoundly unhappy by any stretch, but it’s the hemmed in feeling that has gotten to me the most.

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  17. I love the spectrum capture on your chair. That’s what we call seeing the beauty around us, right?
    On the feelings spectrum, I’ve bee more on the peaceful, powerful, and just a tad on the sad part. For some reason, I feel a twinge of guilt about that.

    I know going into the future I’ll be more grateful for everything.

    I hope the rain slows soon so you can get into your garden; it’s good for the soul.

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    1. Suz, I saw the prism effect and grabbed my phone. I didn’t anticipate that the photo would be this cool, but I’m delighted that it is.

      Overall I’m doing well here at home. I’m introvert so it’s not a huge change for me to be here all the time. However I have my moments when I feel less than powerful. As long as I can keep doing something around here, I’m at peace. It’s when I get thwarted that I find myself musing on the changes we’re all going through– and how that makes me feel.

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  18. Cool picture, and oh, the rain. In Chicago, we have had broken a record in the rain department for the month of May causing Coach to get worked up worrying that we will get water in our basement. I prefer weather that allows me to go for my hour long daily walks. Huge stress relief.

    I have felt busy these last few months, but a different sort of busy. I am usually racing in and out of the house driving to Irish dancing classes with Curly and trying to catch the other kids’ sporting events. My new busy includes trying to get projects done that I wouldn’t normally have time for . . . photo albums, writing, cleaning out closets, etc.

    I have this panicky feeling that I won’t get it all done during this dictated down time. I like the dictated down time for many reasons, and like some of the other readers I feel blessed that Coach can still work and that we are all healthy, etc. I cannot tolerate wasted time, so now that I have an abundance of it I sometimes get dizzy trying to decide what to accomplish. I have also been working out between 2 and 3 hours a day, which I am now sort of addicted to and I cringe to think that I won’t be able to keep this up once I start babysitting again.

    Feeding all 8 of us and carving out space in the fridge while trying to keep the peace between kids who can get bent out of shape easily especially while in close quarters has been another part of my new norm. Oh, and my little fridge drawers (appliance we have had issues with REGULARLY since installed) started beeping this morning. No way to turn it off until they come out to service it and no idea yet when that will be. I now need to find space in the other fridges for all of that food and try not to lose my mind with the beeping – in the middle of the kitchen/family room where we live.

    We have had some internal struggles here with our oldest and we hope his new therapist will improve the situation, because on his bad days I have really felt trapped and like a prisoner in my own home.

    In the months to come, I hope that things go back to being somewhat normal and I assume they will once a vaccine has been developed. In the meantime, I wonder how difficult it will be to transition back to a life of constant running around – assuming the kids’ activities will start up again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ernie, you are one busy woman. Good gracious, I’m worn out reading about all that you’re doing. I’m with you about how nice it is to take a daily walk and with all this rain I haven’t been doing that. Bummer.

      I’m an introvert who has no problem being a sloth, so I don’t worry about wasting time. In fact I am good at doing nothing, but I’m usually doing it in my own way, not a way forced on me by circumstances beyond my control. And therein is why I think I’m feeling all the feelings. I can only imagine how difficult it must be for extroverts who get their energy by being on the go.

      I’m hoping that once our world opens up again people will continue to do less, enjoy being home more. All the constant running around can take a toll on a person’s mental health and the earth, too. Perhaps this pause in time will be the beginning of approaching daily life differently. Guess we’ll all find out together.

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  19. Hi, Ally – Our spring has been all over the place as well. Lulling us all in with the hope of warmth and then being cool, wet and even cold. Definitely not playing nicely.
    Still, I’m banking on the promise of steady warmth, sunshine and a new normal that incorporates the silver lining lessons of our recent shutdowns. Bring it all ON!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Donna, I understand how Spring can be, but this year it has been exceptionally cool and wet. I’m ready to get outside.

      I wonder what silver lining lessons people will take from the great pause. Do less, enjoy more? Spend less, enjoy more? Eat better, enjoy more? I think I have a theme here.

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  20. Yeah, I am all over the map, too. Wondering what life will look like and yet knowing I will just have to wait and see; very little is in my personal control.

    We got an entire morning on rain on Monday. Very light, but windy. It was nice change.

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    1. AutumnAshbough, overall I’m happy enough, grateful about how we are weathering this time, but every once in a while my thoughts start racing and I feel about a hundred different feelings at once. Then I’m back to center. Sitting on the porch I realized this had been going on for months but I hadn’t realized it had been going on.

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  21. Retiring 6 months ago helped prepare me for this. I feel good about doing the grocery shopping. Kind of like I’m taking one for the team. I look forward to getting back to whatever normal we have.

    Very good post, Ally.

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    1. Dan, you did time your retirement quite well. I like your taking one for the team attitude. When someone has had to go into the world, it has been me and I feel the same was as you. Making the best of things here, but not always feeling like I am.

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        1. I’ll be the same way once I can get outside every day to do something, anything, in the garden. No big plans, just trying to maintain it this summer. And enjoy it. I know I’ll be doing that this year more than ever.

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  22. First, my daughter saw your “Cool kids leave comments. Be a cool kid.” prompt and said that she thinks it’s very pleasing (this is high praise from my almost 13 year old) so I wanted to pass that along.

    As for how I’m feeling – I’m all over the map too. It’s kind of exciting being at the cusp of a new time in history. I miss my friends and worry about my children and love the lack of running and consumerism. I also wonder what a year from now will look like and if I’ll even be here which is a thought that seems like it should be depressing but actually feels more a casual wondering and that seems a touch weird. It’s a weird time. You seem to be doing a good in doing your bit. 🙂

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    1. Katie, your daughter’s comment has made my day. Thanks for sharing that here.

      I know what you mean about feeling like we’re on the cusp of something new, but not quite sure what that new is. I agree about how it’d be great to see less running around and less consumerism in the future. If those two changes become permanent I’d be thrilled.

      I hadn’t thought about a year from now. You raise a good issue about how weird it is to wonder if you’ll still be here– and not be anxious about it. There’s enough weirdness lately to fill the ocean. Stay safe, be well.

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  23. I’m also all over the map–sometimes resigned, other times frustrated and angry. Like many I’ve had to change plans that meant a lot to me, and will miss events that are important. (like my grandchild’s birth) Yet this on-going experience has also shown me that I’m adaptable, sometimes creative, and can weigh risks intelligently. I haven’t always had a great attitude, but I’ve found things to appreciate and enjoy. Rainy here too today, but not torrential.

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    1. Margaret, I hear you about the variety of feelings and the intensity of some of them. Everyone I know personally seems to be taking this experience in stride, honest with themselves about what is going on. However, on the news all the people seem to be seething with resentment about something or another. Your ability to weigh risks intelligently is what’ll keep you safe and sane. Would that some of these chuckleheads on the news could do that, too.🙄

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  24. Being somewhat of a control freak – I don’t like not having choices. That was really hard in the beginning – I let all of that go a few weeks ago and surrendered. Life is good now. I am hopeful for the future for sure. Summer is coming and I wont have to travel for work until September – those 2 things keep me going :-).

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    1. Pam, I can understand your reluctance to give up control and your decision to do so. This is not a normal situation and maybe the old ways of exerting control aren’t what is needed to stay healthy? Plus no travel until September sounds sensible. “Life is good now” is a wonderful mindset. A mantra even. I think I’ll start chanting it to myself when I get stressed.

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  25. Usually the way it works is you have a beautiful sunny week and torrential rain all weekend, at least here in the South.

    I’m retired and we don’t go too many places to start with, but frankly I’m ready for this Covid-19 BS to be over with.

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    1. John, made me smile because you’re right about the weather patterns and about your desire for COVID-19 to go away. No one is going to argue with that idea. Good riddance to bad rubbish, as they say.

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    1. Anne, I can understand how for you this pandemic isn’t as life-altering as it is for other people. If I wasn’t doing things differently I’d say the same thing. We all must seem like we’ve screws loose– but really we don’t, exactly. Just so much change all at once.

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  26. When this all started, I naively thought it was something we had to go through to get to the other side and then we’d be back to normal. After 66 days of this with no end in sight and people even talking about summer 2021, I’ve accepted we are not going back to what I knew as normal, but it certainly doesn’t make me happy. I don’t like only going to a store when it is absolutely necessary, scurrying around to get in and get out, wearing a mask, and avoiding people like they are going to inflict great bodily harm. But, in order to not be a statistic, I’m doing it. I worry though that when we get a vaccine or an all clear, will we even want to be around people by then. I’m an introvert, but I like people, enjoy being with them, but it’s never going to be the same. Will we call 911 if someone sneezes? Sad state of affairs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Judy, no truer words: But, in order to not be a statistic, I’m doing it. I feel the same way, both as a cautious woman and as an introvert. I’ve come to realize that I get most of best blogging ideas from casual conversations and observations about random people. Plus even I like to socialize with friends and family in person. My point being that without those small interactions with people I’m feeling the strain of COVID-19 emotionally– and when it comes to writing this blog. No people, no stories. Sad state of affairs, indeed.

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  27. Ah, you ponder the big questions as you “do nothing.” I learned through yoga that “doing nothing” may be the hardest thing for most people, and the most important thing for all people. Me? I dislike “doing nothing,” so I am busy from 6 a.m. until 7 p.m. I do take a 15 minute break at 6:30 a.m. and a 20 minute break at 5:30 p.m. to meditate. That’s my most serene joyful time. When I’m doing nothing. I should learn my own lesson. ;-0
    P.S. What am I doing all that time? Writing. Sending out prompts to my writing students. Reading their stories. Battling the garden nurseries around here with mask and a prayer as my guy and I select plants/flowers for the garden. Baking for the grands (and for the guy), Working on my next book. Walking an hour every day while listening to Audibles. Watching rainbows when the rain allows the sun to move in. Reading blogs like yours and working on my next post. No Time Left.

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    1. Pam, I am gifted at doing nothing. I don’t want to brag, but I am of a slothful disposition. [And let me point out that sloths accomplish things, they just do things slowly. The poor dears are often maligned and referred to as lazy when they aren’t, exactly.]

      I like how you fill your days, especially that baking part. I was going for a daily walk, but with the rains over this month our streets are slippery and I take the warning about flash flooding seriously.

      I’ve gotten away from yoga and dedicated meditation time. Those are two good ideas that used to mean the life to me, but for the life of me I cannot tell you why I stopped. Something more to ponder. 🤔

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      1. Yoga-ing at home (as opposed to going to a class) is much more difficult for me. I “try” to do 3 sets of sun salutations a day. They really help. And I agree about the sloth – much like the turtle getting disrespect, yet look how it beat the hare!

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        1. Maybe that’s my problem. I’ve been trying to do yoga at home by myself. Of course now is not the time to join a class. Yes turtles have a public image problem like sloths do. It’s tricky to get good press when you’re a slowpoke.

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  28. How are you feeling about these last few months? Kind of blah – as relates to how it affects me. Other than decreasing my every two week shopping trip to once a month, then wearing a mask when I go into stores, and utilizing our little town local stores a bit more because they’re less crowded, my routine is much the same. I do miss feeling free to visit a friend when I feel the desire for company.

    Do you find yourself going back and forth, up and down, hither and yon with your feelings? Not consciously, although I have had some disturbing dreams of late. But I really do attribute those to our government and the divisions in society – it galls me to see elected officials denying the health implications, not wearing masks when in public, suggesting medications that have not been thoroughly tested for this virus, etc. Our economy needs us to reopen – I prefer to stay back as much as possible, and to hope some of us are smart enough to be cautious and to go slowly.

    How do you hope to feel in the future? I hope to survive this year, and I hope the elections will bring hope of changes for the better. I hope we can come together soon. I hope to feel optimistic, unlike my current feelings.

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    1. Carol, blah is a good way to describe what I suspect is going to someday be called pandemic fatigue. Or some more clever phrase. Our town stores aren’t open so for us it is curbside pickup at big box retail stores. Not bad, but different. And boring.

      I agree with you about how galling it is to see people callously disregard the health of other people by not wearing masks when needed. Or by protesting the concept of social distancing. I don’t expect much from people, especially politicians, but at some point the immaturity and stupidity has to stop. The adults need to get things under control again. Sooner rather than later.

      Yes, I want to survive the year, too. I want to see change for the better everywhere. I define better as being a return to respect for learning/experts and human rights. Those two principles alone could turn this country around in no time. Will vote accordingly.

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  29. Well… funny you should ask, Ally. I made a huge decision earlier today: I wrote to a man who does home renovations in our area, and I asked him to stop by our home at his convenience over the next weeks, months, whenever he felt comfortable doing so. It has been our plan to renovate our kitchen next year. So pandemic or not, we thought we’d see start an early conversation about it. We’re either nuts, practical, or going stir-crazy, I’m not sure which of the three.

    Love the prism of colors, btw. – Marty

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    1. Marty, we had our kitchen renovated about 10 years ago. It is one of the best improvements we’ve done on this house. It was a HUGE MESS while it was going on, but it was never dull. From that point of view it’ll solve that stir-crazy feeling toot sweet. And making the design decisions will keep you engaged in life. You have no idea how many decisions you’ll be deciding…

      I liked the photo, too. Thanks. Once in a while I snap something like this and get something cool.

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  30. We are having a rainy wet spell too. We’re tryimg to stay on a schedule of sorts to help keep us motivated during the Pause. Having a DIY bathroom remodel helps, but now with all our summer visitors cancelling, we’re not in a rush to finish. i find myself more sad on the rainy days and missing my friends and family. We connect virtually, but its not the same. I know this too shall pass, but I tjink it will be several more months before we will have a vaccine. Until then its not safe. Stay safe

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    1. Sue, we are by default on a schedule of sorts because my husband is working from home, going into the office [our kitchen table] at the usual time. That has helped bring some structure to our days. A DIY bathroom remodel would be a great way to distract yourself from what’s going on outside your house. I agree that the rainy days slow me down so much that I begin to feel maudlin. I wonder when the vaccine will arrive on the scene. I’d say discovering it would be the fastest way for a scientist to win a Nobel Peace Prize.

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  31. Spent 1 1/2 hrs waiting in line at the garden centre this morning. Although I wasn’t nearly as picky as I usually am, I managed to get what I needed & trust me, I won’t be rushing back!

    This is the 1st week we have had of consistent sunshine in quite some time. Heading out for a nice long bike ride tomorrow 🎉

    Hope your weather turns a little more favourable. Sunshine seems to make everything feel a little more bearable

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    1. Lynn, I haven’t tried going to the garden center around here. Your experience doesn’t make me want to rush to go there. I looked into ordering online with curbside pickup but the minimum was $300 which would be a whole lot of annuals and tomato plants. I’m looking forward to summer to distract me and give me a focus away from news about the virus, thus this rain is more of a bummer than it normally would be.

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  32. Someone needs to tell Momma N that April is over, so stop with the showers already! I am ready to get back to my life again too. I just have no idea what that life will look like.

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    1. Laurie, that’s the whole issue isn’t it? What are we moving forward into? I’m tired of waiting and this last example of waiting, courtesy of the rain, got to me more than usual. I look forward, with glee, to summer.

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  33. I’m less concerned about the pandemic that I am about the political environment. The way to get through any disaster is to stay calm and that’s not what’s happening. I did hear about the flooding … oh my. I hope it doesn’t affect you.

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    1. Jan, you raise a good point. We lack political leadership now when we need it the most. Elect a clown, get a circus. The flooding is around us in this county, but not directly on our property so I’m just avoiding certain roads that are a mess.

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  34. I feel conflicted about the last few months – a sort of survivor guilt, being OK when so, so many are anything but.

    I am a tempermental sort -at first, I found I could really rock the “be kind” mantra – lately, the emphasis is on the temper part of temperamental – lately, it’s been frayed.

    I thought I could live with uncertainty – now, I’m not so sure. So, I’d love if if my future feelings could be “at ease” and that the future was soon. But I know that’s likely not to be the case.

    But, thanks for asking, eh?

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    1. Maggie, I know what you mean about feeling conflicted. So many things have happened and while we’re ok there is something to your idea of survivor’s guilt.

      Being kind is good, but I find that I’m comfortable not always living by that mantra. I’m learning to embrace the uncertainty we now all face. I want to be at ease, too– but am not pinning my hopes on that idea coming to fruition anytime soon.

      I figure we’re all doing the best we can under ridiculous circumstances, taking it day by day. Stay safe, be well.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. I figure that while we are smack dab in the middle of the pandemic, by talking/writing about what we’re thinking and feeling we all can find some focus and solace. Hang in there– and avoid those germs.

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  35. I felt better today because it was sunny and warm…..the rain is depressing, even if we need it. I ran errands this week too, and that was stressful enough – just groceries, pharmacy etc, although I did stop at one of those pop-up nurseries attached to the grocery story and bought some veggies to plant, which helped. But I didn’t take much pleasure out of looking at the flowers, as most of them looked pathetic, so I left them there. I don’t get any pleasure out of shopping anymore period, even if it gets me out of the house, because the mask, gloves and social distancing, while necessary, are tiring..and then there’s the worry. I fondly recall the days of browsing in a store….now it’s in and out with an agenda and a list, and disinfect after every stop. Where’s the fun in that? Otherwise, I think a sort of gloom has descended on me and the planet, as we all contemplate a whole year of this…..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Joni, you’ve described how I feel about shopping now too. There is no fun in it– only a sense of duty about getting it done quickly and safely. It tires me.

      I also agree that there is an existential gloom that has descended on the planet. When there are gray days with cold rain I feel it the most, hence this post. I wonder who I’ll be if I must endure a year living like a hermit, scurrying around in the world-at-large avoiding people and germs. I mean, who will any of us be?

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      1. Very true. Speaking of hermits, I’ll be blogging about them next week, as in “Hermit Cookies” – an old recipe from the last century that my mother used to make. I didn’t have time to do a post this week (although I don’t know why as my days don’t seem very productive) – so I just posted history stuff this week as it was quick and easy.

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          1. They were spice cookies, and had walnuts, dates and raisins, and spices – cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg. The bakery at my grocery store makes them, and I have to admit theirs are much better than mine!

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  36. Well Ally – I am used to working from home and the solitude of living alone and having no family, so that’s not been an issue with me, but the ordeal of doing anything outside of the house seems like such a big deal anymore. I am still enjoying my walking, but in the neighborhood not so much, and I am resentful of buffoons who breached rules and we walkers are punished and hand-slapped for it. I have never liked generalities and to be lumped in with the other people who were thoughtless and thinking of themselves only makes me angry. I think if people were told not to gather in a group here, then give them a ticket or a warning. But no, that was not done.

    I am tired of the constant protests that the people here in Michigan are wont to do – today it was protesters giving haircuts on a lawn near the Capitol Building when we’re not supposed to have such activity and this is just to get a rise out of people, or have them arrested or bring the state police in.

    Meanwhile mid-Michigan had catastrophic flooding to over 10 feet, washed away roads, cars, houses with rain up to the roof. I’m weary of the weather, not just for how it affects walking, but that I feel all these items like erratic weather, viruses, etc. have descended at one time and it’s out of control and we are powerless. I wonder what we did … or didn’t do … and realize how much I took our freedom for granted before. So I stew over that a little every day.

    I think about them making a vaccine and how careful they’ll do it as they rush to be the first country with this feat … is it safe, or do we just accept it and go with the flow to avoid getting sick or worse? We don’t have a whole lot of guidance these days. Our President went off on our Secretary of State today because she sent out applications for election ballots to be filed by mail and once again the threat of withholding aid to Michigan was bandied about for several hours, then walked back.

    I am going out tomorrow morning for allergy shots and to buy gas. I can’t just pop in like I’ve done for decades for shots, I had to make an appointment … I would not even have gone as I’m not sneezing, since I’m wearing a mask every morning, but I don’t want to return to a three-week regimen which is what the doctor will invoke. And I’m buying gas. The last time I interacted with people for a business transaction was March 16th when I did these same two things. That’s a little sad. In my walks, I’m not touching anyone or near anyone – just talking, that is all. This is a big deal now – going on errands.

    I intended to go to the grocery store, after much consternation, and kept thinking I could order a few things from Amazon, but no, I would put on my big girl panties and go to the grocery store. So I wrote out a list and figured I had time to get my few items before my 9:55 a.m. shot appointment (really … every five minutes appointment schedule now and you still can’t walk in). I planned for this “outing” like I was embarking on a trip for goodness sake. Then sitting here tonight, I realized that I could not do the grocery store first as who knows what the protocol is now? Do they only let some people in at a time? I only do the U-scan, never the cashier. I pack my own stuff to separate it. I could be in and out of the store and have a whole “germy morning” and be done with it in one fell swoop. I wanted to go tomorrow as it is “senior day” (those over 60). Then I was so disgusted by the thought of three simple tasks having to be divided over two days. It is a small thing, but like you, watching the mud accumulate where your flowers were to be, is just plain annoying! Thanks, I feel better now for getting that off my chest. 🙂

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    1. Linda, I like your line: “I am resentful of buffoons who breached rules” because that’s what it is coming down to, isn’t it? For those of us who are doing our level-headed best to NOT get anyone else sick those buffoons, or as I call them wackos, are as much of a problem as the virus itself. And they enjoy causing the protests, both in real life and online, because it gives them a sense of power. I find myself yelling “GROW UP” way too often when I see and read the news.

      I completely relate to and understand your need to plan every stinking detail of your outing to accomplish three simple tasks. How did such things get so complicated so fast? It wears me out just thinking about going out into the world now. I’m an introvert so being at home comes naturally to me, but in the before times I’d run errands without much thought. That’s what I call going with the flow, being a free spirit who gets things done in my own way. Now, like you mentioned, it’s all about deciding if you want to have a “germy morning” or spread out your simple little tasks over a couple of days.

      Like so many of the commenters here I am tired of being thwarted by germs and stupidity and the rain. Of course at least the rain will eventually stop annoying me. But the germs and stupidity seem endless.

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      1. That is how I feel Ally – you don’t want to get me started on it. Wacko works well too. I get just as inflamed reading comments by the people who hide behind their profiles on social media and repeatedly bash every news story with their idiotic “take” on it. I should not read the comments as I get angry or am left shaking my head.

        Today the commenters (who refer to the law-abiding/conscientious Michiganders as “sheeple”) will be happy since the Governor relaxed a few restrictions so now groups may gather up to ten people. That will shut them up for a while. Today the Court of Claims’ ruling on whether the Governor has been abusing her powers came down and no, it was ruled she is not, but the matter will now be appealed to the state Supreme Court. She has nothing to gain personally by her restrictions. There have been calls for her impeachment and/or removal from office. People say she is a media queen as Joe Biden has put her on his short list for possible VP candidates and wants a woman VP.

        I went out with much trepidation. The receptionist desk was covered by Plexiglas and the same at the gas station counter where you pay. I was glad to get home and not have to worry about what I may have touched. I am now dealing with a little ant invasion which compounds my miseries. It has abated today as we had no rain, but the past three weeks have been miserable – every time I turn around they are there.

        Like

        1. Linda, I read few comments on any news story for the reason you mention. If people were talking sensibly I’d pay attention but too often it’s unhinged rants that defy explanation. Too tired to deal with such things.

          I wasn’t aware that your governor was being considered for VP. That’s cool for her and the sane people in your state and this country. She seems to know how to handle difficult situations and that alone endears her to me.

          I’m glad you got back safely from your adventures in the real world. Ants are annoying but at least you know what to do about them. Easier to deal with than the virus, I’d reckon.

          Like

          1. I think I need to read less of them as well Ally, especially the local group forum for our City where I go to glean info about what happens in the neighborhoods that is not reported in the newspaper.

            Yes, Gretchen Whitmer is on the short list and she has been dodging the reporters’ queries for weeks about how she feels about that status, simply saying she has a job to do now due to the pandemic and Michigan has always been her home. But the vetting process for her was made public earlier this week and so she finally admitted it was a heady feeling to be considered but with the damage with the dam burst, she is concentrating on that for the short term. On Twitter today, it was trending that Amy Klobuchar is also undergoing vetting for VP.

            I was glad to be home too, I won’t do those errands for a month now. The groceries will be done as quickly as I can get in/out, then concentrate on enjoying walks again and get away from it all for a few short hours. The ants are bothersome as they turn up all of a sudden, but are not scary. We had carpenter ants for several years – those are scary. We had oak trees with carpenter ants and a light fixture in the dropped ceiling downstairs that a flying ant got into and then made a nest. We were sprayed by a pest service for many years to control them.

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              1. Thank you – you too Ally. Kate has given me the name of a product that works for her. I was using a product Shelley recommended last year. Apparently ants are more relentless here in Michigan than in Wisconsin. 🙂

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  37. Excellent pic Ally 🙂 & thanks muchly for the Feeling Wheel – that will be a useful tool for when 1-2-1 coaching can happen again. As to your questions, I’ve travelled from positive & pragmatic to downright depressed, and all points in between, but know I’m not alone in that. I’m appreciative of the fortunate aspects, while acknowledging there’s been some pretty rough stuff to navigate. But if I’m honest, Life has been like that for a while now. I’ve kept on by looking at the months ahead with hope and full of plans, only to be presented with the next challenge. I don’t see any reason to change my attitude though, for what are we human beings without hope and our dreams?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Deb, I’m amazed by the photo. It was a lark to snap a pic, a lark that turned out to be pretty. Note to self: must lark more.

      The Feeling Wheel is clever. It helps me be more articulate about my confused feelings about how I’m doing in the moment. I had something similar to it when I was in college majoring in English Lit. The purpose then was to be able to understand the characters in the novels, which is pretty much what I’m doing with it now– except I’m the character.

      I understand what you mean about going from positive to depressed with a foray over into gratitude to be tripped up by rough stuff. I like your take on looking ahead with hope and plans. I, too, shall continue to dream– and deal with what is.

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      1. Yes, decidedly you must lark more! I shall add a note to myself to play around with my phone too, rather than waiting till I have the heavyweight proper camera.

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  38. I am actually okay with being at home on a regular basis anyway, so this hasn’t affected me as much as it has others. That’s not to say I wasn’t busy before but I have always been careful and cautious during winter because of normal illness, so the things most people are doing, I have always been. NOT washing groceries but not going to the grocery in the middle of the day on a Sunday. That isn’t smart in a normal flu season, honestly.

    I appreciate this time because it made me stop and slow down. I walk in nature at least four times a week, I never did that before, even in good weather.

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    1. Kari, I’m like you in that I’m comfortable being at home, doing my own thing, so NOT being on the go is normal for me. What bugs me is that I can’t be spontaneous when I do want to go do something.

      I need to get outside for a nature walk on a regular basis like you do. I walk around the subdivision and it’s tree-ful + green, but it’s not the same healing vibe as being out in a park or nature preserve. Sadly those places are closed right now. I took them for granted before all of this happened. Won’t do that again.

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  39. Gardening furiously. Yesterday in a light drizzle the soil was just right for wriggling tufts of grass out of the lavender and yanking and twisting deep dandelion roots from the edging. I tucked annuals into empty spaces laid bare by my ruthless tugging and dressed the new plants with steer manure compost. Now we have an overcast, misty morning to keep the seedlings moist while their roots stretch unseen. Coffee alongside the bay window and I am expectant, content with the here and now.

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    1. kairosia, your yesterday sounds lovely. I do like yanking out weeds by their roots. I picture people who I don’t like as I do it. Very therapeutic. And of course when it comes to gardening, the planting of seeds is the best. Coffee and a watchful eye while they start to grow sounds like heaven to me. I am content knowing you are content. Enjoy.

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  40. Hi ally – we are living through history !
    My son actually got a cool new job during this pandemic – crazy huh? – and he moves to Texas tomorrow –
    And I enjoyed the way the you wrote with the weather and how it in utter contemplation –
    The week of rain here has been blah – but I also was super busy with some online work and misc – that the week flew by – I think that is also crazy – but the first four weeks of this great pause did allow me to get caught up on much needed long nights of sleep – but I have been pretty busy during the pause – some down time – cabin fever a few times – but not like some have had it

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    1. Yvette, it is crazy that your son got a job during the pandemic. Memorable and rather encouraging to read about life going on like normal.

      Our rain this week has brought with it a chill in the air. Even if it wasn’t wet outside I doubt that I’d be out in the garden too long before I got too cold to work. So, you know, inside the screened-in porch, wrapped in fleece, I am happy… enough… everything considered.

      Funny you mention about getting lots of sleep. I’ve come to realize that I’ve never been so well rested [physically] and so totally exhausted [emotionally] at the same time. It’s a strange dichotomy.

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      1. Happy… enough
        Ahhhh such a profound and beautiful two words –
        And thought of your post when I was outside – I went out twice – with the new pup – to eat a handful of pistachios – I threw the shells over the fence – and standing there was almost silly –
        Just needed to get outside – so Eating pistachios outside worked – hahaha

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  41. Woohoo, I’m commenting below 150:) So true, the normal we had is past! But, I think the new normal will be better once we get used to it (past this year, because this year will still be very intense, with exposures, etc. etc.) Yes, we can apt ourselves on the back. You are one of the few I know, in blog land, who allowed yourself to feel this year – the good and the bad. That’s a big accomplishment!

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    1. DrJunieper, congrats on getting into the comments at a number that pleases you. Like I said, I enjoy all the comments but am as amazed as anyone about them. Grateful, of course.

      I suspect you’re right in that we’ll all adapt to what we have to do to survive in a healthy and hopeful way. I agree that this year will continue to be intense. So much change, so many consequences, so much adjustment. I do my best, but it is tiring to be in societal flux like this while being stuck at home.

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  42. “However on the other hand I feel *hell to the yes* I’m doing something. I’m actively holding it together in the middle of a pandemic. ” Love it! That’s about what I’m doing, most days. Some days, not so much. I find myself singing the theme to Monk: “You’d better pay attention, or this world we love so much might just kill you. I could be wrong, now. But I don’t think so.” Sometimes I laugh, but sometimes I don’t. ya know?

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    1. Marian, Monk’s theme song is perfect for our times! Great lyrics. I’d forgotten about it and now will be smiling as I sing it to myself. Thanks. And yes, I do understand about sometimes laughing, sometimes not. It makes you human, I’d say.

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  43. Yes, lots of crazy emotions. For a while actually was feeling immense joy and happiness. Now sadness and grief. Guess we never know which is going to be visiting us on certain days. This is a lovely post, Ally.

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    1. Kathy, I was more joyful at first, too. But as this has dragged on I’ve become more depressed or apathetic– or something. However today I feel happy. Like you said it, we never know what each day will bring.

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  44. It’s raining here. Again. Actually I don’t mind as we’ve been moving mulch for two days and rain is a good excuse to not move any today. I’m doing OK…being retired and not that outgoing this is not so different than my normal life. Still…I’d like to go out to eat v.s. making all the meals. And I’d like to see my family. Other than that, I’m good. Oh wait. I’d like to go camping too.

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    1. Dawn, spreading mulch is a thankless job, until it’s all done and everything looks great. I’d like to go out to eat somewhere, too. Our local restaurants aren’t open for sit down meals, so we wait for that magic day when someone else serves us. I hadn’t considered how this pandemic impacts camping. Certainly that’ll be available soon, yes?

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  45. Nice summation of what so many of us have been going through. Sadly, some people think we can return to “normal.” I say, “sadly” because returning to normal might mean we forget about this great pause and then have to go through a greater pause when COVID-19 comes back around (if it ever leaves). I’d be happy if at least we came through this more mindful of our effects on others, if policies changed that gave people financial support to stay home when they’re sick. So many people want to (erroneously) compare COVID to the flu as if it’s okay that thousands of people die from the flu every year. Hello, maybe if we practice good preventive behavior, we could reduce those deaths too. Sigh. I’m on my soapbox. Sorry. I know people who want to return to pre-COVID-19. Magical thinking. The great pause is giving us an opportunity to reassess what we value in life. I’d hate to lose that.

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    1. Marie, you make an excellent point about how the desire to return to normal discounts all that we’ve learned, or should have learned, from this pandemic. Magical thinking, indeed. I agree wholeheartedly that becoming more mindful of how one person’s behavior impacts another person is a good lesson to take away from this pause. We’re all in this together, yet that reality either frightens or eludes many people– and those people seem to be the ones with the loudest voices.

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      1. I do hope we learn from this lesson. I think most people understand the importance of taking precautions, to protect each other. Why some people feel threatened by that, I’ll never really understand (and I don’t think I want to 😉 ).

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  46. Amazing color spectrum!
    How lovely to have a screened in porch. What a great view you must have. Just being outside, even if you’re not gardening, is so healing.
    I’ve had highs and lows during this pandemic season. To maintain a semblance of sanity I severely limit news watching, social media scrolling, etc. Just those few actions have helped my mood tremendously!

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    1. Marie, our screened-in porch is delightful. Zen-Den insisted on one when we had the house built. I would have passed, but he was right– it’s worth every dollar we spent to add it on. For the reason you mention, in fact; being outside is healing.

      I don’t watch or read much news now either. Most of my social media action is in the blogosphere, thus I’m steering clear of the vitriol that I hear is going on in FB and Twitter and wherever people go to vent.

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  47. Ally, this labeling of the “great pause” is very interesting. It does conjure the image of a movie that is proceeding along, paused, and restarts precisely where it left off. I don’t think that’s a probably scenario. Just by virtue of economic reality, many businesses will undoubtedly fail and the inevitable flow of continuing death toll can only serve to remind us of a different hygiene protocol in everything we do as we move forward.

    So while I don’t buy into the overly optimistic view of a “great reboot” where consumerism is brought to heel and the climate has a chance to heal as a result of lower economic activity, neither do I buy the concept of a simple pause. Like a river flows, temporarily interrupted and rerouted, the course ahead remains to be forged, one community at a time.

    Interesting that wheel of feelings…. The hardest feeling is one of frustration at not being able to travel to see our kids in the U.S. So near yet so far…

    Waiting for some rainy days here at the end of the dry season in Oaxaca Mexico. From what we hear, the area where we live goes from dry dry to tropical storms in a flash. So heavy rains will no doubt be here in June and then hurricane season begins….!

    Ben (& Peta)

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    1. Ben & Peta, I’ve seen this point in history referred to as the Great Pause and for me that is accurate. Everything in my life is on hold until we see how the post-pandemic world will play out. I’m hoping for the best, which in my worldview would be less doing, more awareness of how one person impacts another person. But I’m the first to admit that my ideas might be a dream, albeit one that’s helping get through this stay-at-home lifestyle.

      I can understand your frustration about not seeing your kids, considering where you just moved. If it’s not one thing it’s another. At least, if nothing else, when this all over and you survive hurricane season, you will truly enjoy getting together with family. Stay safe, be well.

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  48. I feel much the way you do Ally, plenty of highs and lows, and everything in between. Yo-yo like depending upon what I notice around me that day. We haven’t had as much rain as you have, the days with sunshine and opportunities for Vitamin D seem to help. I hope you see sun soon!

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    1. Shelley, well said. These have been emotional yo-yo days. Supposedly this coming week the rain is going to cease and the sun is going to shine, like it should at this time year. I like rain, appreciate it in theory, but honestly enough already.

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  49. I’m pretty much a wreck, but I stay well-distracted for the most part. I do notice I’m a bit more… umm, words for “my emotions are closer to the surface” lately.
    The rain finally let up and I did get back into the dirt. Then the rain came again.

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    1. joey, being distracted helps. I get what you’re saying. I was happily doing things at my own pace, then the rain stopped me. Cold. Now we’ve had some sunshine and I’m beginning to feel more in my groove.

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  50. Hi Ally, The word “pause” has been surfacing. I find it is a gentle word for some of the challenges people are facing.

    A VERY profound sentence “I’m actively holding it together in the middle of a pandemic.” Huge kudos to strength of character and likely a skill set you have learned and practised. Your post says how I feel. Is it our age group? Similar personalities and coping skills? I always remember how fortunate I am to have the basics. Re: the rain – the irony is how I have pouring rain as my white noise when I have difficulty sleeping. Sometimes, in the morning I don’t know whether it is pouring outside or is it my white noise?

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    1. Erica/Erika, I agree about the word “pause” and how it seems a gentle way to refer to this situation that is going on around the world. To me the word suggests that we’ll get on with things, eventually. And that now is a time to accept what is.

      You raise an interesting question. I don’t know if it is your age or your personality or your life experiences that make someone more, or less, resilient during this pandemic. It’s probably a combination of those variables + a few more. I do know that in my observation those of us who acknowledge gratitude seem to be doing better than people who aren’t wired that way.

      Funny about your white noise machine fooling you. I’d be confused, too. Machines can be sneaky.

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    1. philmouse, thank you. I’m flattered you think so. I’d forgotten about the Feelings Wheel, too, then I stumbled over this newer version of it and loved it. The one I had before was more complex. This one is much clearer.

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  51. Thank you for introducing me to the Feeling Wheel. I’ll use it with the kids I teach. My feelings have been almost all in the lower half of the wheel in the Peaceful, Powerful, Joyful range with occasional brief leaps over to the irritated slot when living in close proximity to people for such a long time niggles. Interesting to think about though.

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    1. Arlene, I like the Feeling Wheel so I’m glad you like it and find it potentially useful. I’ve been all over the place with my emotions these last few weeks. I need to be outside more, I suspect. I get what you mean about niggles.

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  52. I definitely have felt myself going up and down during this pandemic. We had some floods here. There were downed trees nearby but our property held up well. Things are finally beginning to dry out and warm up and I’m trying to spend a lot of time outdoors!

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    1. Amy, I’m trying to get outdoors more often, too. I accept that my feelings are all over the place, but I am tired of it. I think that eventually everything will balance out in our world, but the process of getting there is something else indeed.

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