Sunday, March 29, 2020
Early Morning Thoughts...Pandemic Edition
As I laid in bed in the very early morning hours, I fought with myself as to whether to get up or stay there and pray I fell asleep once more. After an hour and a half I gave up. I got up, slipped into my cozy and soft fleece robe and headed to the living room while it was still very dark outside and the world was quiet.
I did not start the coffee maker, hoping that after reading some blog post of some amazing people and the comments on my own blog, that I would be able to go back to sleep. Sometimes this works. Not this morning. I finally gave up on that thought and got the coffee maker going. The front living room curtains were also drawn open so that I could see the sun rise once it decided that it was ready to wake up also.
As I sat sipping my coffee, flavored with French Vanilla creamer, out of one of my favorite mugs that reminds me of spending time in Montana with my parents, it occured to me that we really do live in a different world now. It is one that none of us could have ever been fully prepared for and will forever change how we look at and do things. Some of these will be for the better, and some for the worse.
Our family has a private facebook chat group where we can all connect behind the scenes and keep up with one another. I started this before this pandemic hit and am so glad I did. It keeps us all connected. We have also started using Skype and Facetime to chat with each other where we can see each other and watch the crazy grandkids and we can all connect with my parents too. I know that was a crazy run on sentence, but I am just starting to sip on my coffee now so my brain is not fully engaged yet. 😊 We are also trying to share more of our daily lives on Facebook, along with pictures for our friends and family to interact with.
As for my little town, people are reaching out to one another and doing what they can. One of my friends is sewing facemasks for the residents and workers of our senior care home. She ran out of elastic and put the word out that she needed more and the donations came pouring in. Friends and neighbors are checking with one another if they need to run in to one of the bigger towns to see if anyone needs anything from the grocery store or pharmacy. I have let my friends know that if they run out of something, like flour, please let me know because I do have a rather large supply here and would be more than happy to share with them. Our little store here in town is trying so hard to keep the basics like milk, bread, eggs, butter and other items in stock so people don't have to make the longer trip into the bigger towns where the virus has made it's presence known.
With all this good, we are also seeing how this seems to have caught so many people totally off guard. It amazes me that even with the news of this virus hitting our state of Washington pretty early on, people were not stocking up on basics and continued to go out to eat, go to the movies, etc. instead of using that money for things that they would need and are now complaining that they don't have the money to buy a few extras. My biggest pet peeve though is people who were out buying pot and alcohol for recreational use while not stocking up on things that they and their kids would need. They are the ones now complaining the loudest it seems. I feel so bad for their children.
We are also seeing many people who have never been taught how to cook for themselves and who have relied on restaurants to keep them fed. They have bare pantries and they put themselves at risk every time they go out to pick up food for each meal. Before things got really bad I told my kids to please go out and stock their pantries well. One couple in particular, because of their busy lifestyle, had relied way too much on take out food. They did do some stocking of the pantry though and I'm so glad they did. Gotta keep all my family as safe as possible! People in general are going to have to learn how to bake bread, make soups that don't come out of a can, make casseroles to help stretch the meat, etc.. Luckily they can find everything they need to learn how to do this online these days.
I think gardening, even in pots, is going to make a huge comeback. It has to. Think about the disruption in the farming industry and how much food we import from poorer countries. Those countries, with inadequate healthcare, are going to tragically suffer huge losses of lives. Those countries will be struggling to feed themselves, much less trying to export things. Please, if you are a praying person, keep them all in your prayers...my heart aches knowing what they are going to be facing, if they are not already. We are going to need to grow as much of our own food as we can and learn to preserve it, just as they are. I have already seen a run on gardening seeds at the stores, so many people in my area are getting prepared to do just that. I hope Jeff and I are able to grow enough for our family and to help our neighbors in need also.
Even after this pandemic passes through, we will be feeling the effects from it for years to come. The economic hit that has already happened and high unemployment rates this has caused will haunt us for years to come. Jeff and I are in a better position than most as out home is paid off. We will be using some of the stimulus check from the government to pay our property taxes and pay off a hospital bill in full. Jeff commented that he would rather pay off the hospital bill in full than one of our other bills because they are going to need every penny to help fight this thing...he is right. I am so grateful to be married to such a kindhearted man who realizes in these tough times, who needs things most.
Be blessed, be safe, and take care on one another.