I’m Not Okay. And That’s Okay.
But Please, For The Love Of All That Is Good, Stay Inside
I wake up one morning with the sunlight hitting my face, filtered in from the window behind the bed. The light is warm — unusual for this time of year — but I think nothing of it.
I shrug on my jacket, open the door, and head down the elevator to our building’s lobby. I push open the front door and step out to a blast of heat. My eyes squint in the unexpected sunlight. I feel warmth seep into every inch of my skin. The sweat forms instantly under my jacket. I stare up at the sky in confusion.
It’s the beginning of March. Why is it so hot?
Then, I’m awake. I open my eyes and realize I’m still in bed. I look outside and see the familiar grey drizzle outside my window. I sigh. Whew, what a bad dream. How crazy it would be if that came true? I think.
Flash forward two months and it’s the second weekend of May. Today is Mother’s Day and this weekend is the warmest it’s been in Seattle all year. Yesterday I stepped outside for the first time in days. I felt the sun. Before I knew it, my dream had come true.
Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been watching as the world pushes its way forward. Humans adapting. Humans rejecting. Humans being humans.
It started with the protests. People took to the streets. Frustrated, angry, stir crazy. Give me freedom or give me Coronavirus they shouted, even as hundreds of people die around them.
I get it. I’m right there with them. My already unstable mental health has taken a nosedive since this all started. And it’s slowly been getting worse.
Is this virus the end of the world? Probably not. Is it killing hundreds — thousands — of people every day? Yes. Is this some big conspiracy? Well, nothing has been proven.
We’re following the rules. We’re limiting all nonessential outdoor time — all outings are limited to the grocery store, the pharmacy next door, and the occasional bi-weekly walk (that’s every other week — not twice a week).
Are we doing the right thing? I don’t know.
Are we doing the best we can? Hell yes.
And yet, here we are. Beaches are crowded. Reopened hiking trails are instantly overwhelmed. While Allan and I stay inside, clasping our teas and cocktails, waiting for this to just be over, feeling our mental health deteriorate every single hopeless day, the world seems to be just moving on without any proof that we are anywhere near ready to do so.
The number of new COVID-19 cases in Washington are fluctuating every day. Thursday it was 326. Friday it was 157. Yesterday it was 286. Cases are seemingly fluctuating like everyone’s collective mood on a daily basis and yet it feels like almost no one around us is taking it seriously anymore.
It’s like the whole world got up and decided everything was okay. But no one actually said it is (well, no one who actually has any say in the matter). So, what the hell?
All of this is to say: I don’t know what’s going on in the world. I don’t know if this is an over-exaggeration or something that needs to be taken a little more seriously. But all I’m saying is that it feels pretty damn serious.
People are dying. People are losing their jobs. People are losing their homes. People are losing their hope. People are losing their minds.
So all I’m saying is let’s just stay inside, all of us, just a bit longer. Let’s get this shit over with so we can all move on with our lives, yes?