How are you doing?

Yep, we are still closed.  Our original day to reopen was April 6th, that has changed, with the advisement of the Health Center we will be closed until further notice.

So, how are you doing?  Seriously, are you okay?  We are all experiencing a new world and our mental health is being compromised before Covid-19 even has a chance to touch us.  Maybe I am wrong, maybe it is just me.  If that is the case, just bear with me this week.

First off I will start by saying that I feel like I have been experiencing a really crappy coma dream since about 2016.  By coma dream, I mean that none of this is real.  I have been in a coma since 2016 and cancer, losing some friends, Covid-19, etc. are just what my mind is experiencing while I lay in some bed in a facility somewhere in Missouri.  Boy, I really hope that is true for all of you guys.

The parallels between my cancer journey and this covid-19 journey has some similarities.  Fear, being one of the big ones.  Like I mentioned a few years back, fear is okay, it is our nature, but we cannot let us control us.  Fear can be a great tool for self-preservation, it can also become a debilitating monster on your back. 

Here are my recommendations, they are the same I give to new cancer survivors during the beginning of their journey.  Stay off the internet.  If you cannot resist it, please make sure your resources are legitimate and up to date.  Don’t become overwhelmed with the details, do what you can handle.  I never read any of the side effects of my chemo, I just trusted my doctor to take care of me, knowing the side effects would have only caused fear that I had no control over.   During Covid-19 I am relearning how to be good to myself all over again; doing only what I can.  Relax, wash your hands, 1 person, 1 cart, social distance, stay home; these things I can easily do.  Setting up a sanitizing station, like our essential folks have been doing, hmmm, that makes my brain melty.  For now, I am just following what the Morgan County Health Department tells me, yep, Shawn Brantley, I am listening.  On that note, bless him, his job makes my heart ache and my brain goo. 

There are special times in one’s life, were you pause and think, this is big.  I will always remember where I was, what I was doing, how I felt.  This is one of them, but different.  I remember the Space Shuttle disaster and 9-11, but neither directly touched my life like my cancer diagnosis.  My cancer journey was and is a longer and more personal experience.   Everything else seemed okay, but me.  Covid-19 is like nothing we have ever experienced and it is already longer than I ever hoped it will be and I dread knowing how long we have left.   I went on a walk the other day, I enjoyed the weather, watching a little one riding her tricycle and a family visiting on their front porch.  Everything seemed okay, but it is not.  It almost feels like every day should be cloudy and cold. 

Morgan County RII teacher, Jason Vansell shared a wonderful idea for his students.  He is encouraging them to journal their experience.  The kids will be sharing their journals with the Missouri Historical Society because Jason understands the historical significance of what is going on.  I agree, but also understand the mental benefits that come with journaling.   I told him I was stealing that idea.  I challenge you to start journaling and I want you to share yours with us.  You can mail me copies, or you can join our Facebook group to share your everyday experiences. 

I hope you are doing okay in this different world we are living in.  Take care of yourself, follow the rules and enjoy the downtime.  You can journal or you can check out a multitude of things from us, please refer to the last 2 bookworm articles or better yet, just call us and we can help you.  Be safe and be good to yourself. 

Upcoming Facebook events: 10:00am, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday we are sharing stories, 10:30 on Wednesday.  On Wednesday at 10:00am Brittany will be doing Story Time.  Every day at 5:00pm we will be sharing Brenda Steffens reading The Wild Robot.