Blogging is not a sprint. It’s a marathon.
I read that somewhere this week, and it might have been the kick I needed to jump start my engine. See, since this quarantine thing started, I’ve opened a blank page to write a blog post a couple of dozen times, but always end up closing the page several hours later just as blank as it was when I opened it. This, my friends, is writer’s block like I’ve never experienced before. And the effect isn’t just at the foot of my creative writing. Same is true by the halt in concentration for work related material, content and my book. I even found myself at a loss when I tried to make my marriage journal entry.
I suppose this is the mental effect COVID19 has on me personally. It’s also manifesting biologically with an increase in appetite for food and sex, but we’ll leave that for later. I am stressed, and I have no way to express it, when my go-to method (writing) seems to have unceremoniously left me, much like everything else this past month. It feels as if all avenues I previously relied on to simply breathe, have been yanked away.
In spite of my floundering, and lack of time to labour in my love for my blog in the months preceding this unprecedented time, I’ve woken up several times to WordPress notifications of ‘booming stats’. At first it was puzzling, because I knew there wasn’t much in the way of new content to attracting readers. But then it occurred to me that, most of us are told to stay home, and with that came the realization that a blog does in fact, make sense as therapy (for those of us who like reading anyway). Considering my lack of fresh content, it’s also interesting the diversity in which my readers are from, and. I doubt a consequence of several nations under lockdown and/or quarantine. It got me thinking about the quote. Blogging is absolutely a marathon.
It’s 4am, and this is usually when the good pieces (for me) are churned out. This is when my brain decides to defy my body and launch itself into a sequence of thoughts, ideas, and alas, inevitably produce the best blog posts. So, this is me taking advantage of it. And maybe when I wake up later on, my brain won’t be as blank as it’s been for the past month. I need this marathon, to cope with the COVID19 marathon. And marathon it is and will continue to be.
I’ve pretty much been staying indoors since the first case in Jamaica was announced. I’d been working on a time and mental resource-intensive project. On top of that, Sio was home with me, ill as she’d started to become quite often since she had started school a few months before. Having followed the virus diligently for several weeks prior, I knew the shit storm was about to hit. Long before the government ruled schools closed, my husband and I decided Sio would stay home, as we watched the situation develop. I converted my last few site visits to teleconference calls where possible, and just like that, everything halted.
Except that my husband continues to go out into the fray. This is a major source of the anxiety I feel. Because all the precautions we take to stay home, to stay away from our family members could go up in smoke every time he walks through those hospital doors. Still, we’re lucky and grateful that he doesn’t go out every single day anymore. Not every specialty has that flexibility. Knowing all this, I keep thinking about how people parade themselves, blatantly disregarding the authorities’ efforts at containment. Taking this for a joke, behaving complacent. I have no patience for it. I have even stopped deliberately following the news, and passing my time on social media platforms where content is more about what I want to see.
I’ve even finally gotten my family YouTube Channel, The Reid Life going. Learning about editing videos and such helps, even if it’s not consuming. Something to put my energy into and Sio loves it and finds it interesting. Speaking of Sio…
My nerves are frayed. My kid misses school, and she started out requesting to go to friends and playground at school. Time’s passed and she now just sadly asks about whether there will be school in the morning when she wakes up and she wears her disappointment on her face when the answer continues to be ‘no’. Equally crushing is the understanding and disappointment she displays when she asks Daddy if he has to go to work, when she watches him get ready. A few minutes a day to run outside is not enough to expend her energy, and we grapple to get and keep her asleep. Even when she is actually tired, she can outlast us all. She’s been always been energetic, but this? This is an experience and a half.
I wonder how you all are taking these conditions? Mentally. How are you coping? Better than I am, I hope. Do you have any advice for me?
Looking forward to hearing them.