Mondays with Morie—closed, closed, closed–like just about everything else in our lives at the present time. I hate to even say the words “Corona Virus” or “Covid-19”. Our schools are closed for at least three weeks, gatherings of more than fifty people are prohibited for the next EIGHT WEEKS. Libraries, rec plex, churches, casinos. I hadn’t been to the store since Thursday and generally haven’t left the house except to go to the fabric store since things have gotten really crazy. But I decided to brave the elements and venture out to Walmart this morning, which I generally avoid doing. It was amazing. There’s no toilet paper, or hand sanitizer, or cleaning products, or flour or eggs or canned goods or ground beef. It was like walking through a third world country.
I’ve banned listening to the news. My brain is self-quarantining. Maybe I could understand this if we had an explosion of infected coronavirus patients, but we haven’t. Some say that this is directly the result of these closures and self-quarantines and social distancing, but I’m not sure I totally believe that. I’ve been having a lot of difficulty with so many things being closed. Not for me, because I’ve become pretty much of a homebody the last couple of years, but all those people who rely on the entertainment venues and bars and restaurants; any business that relies on customers (except maybe Amazon, they’re adding personnel.)
Like I said, I haven’t listened to the news in several days. I found that all I wanted to do was scream at the television, so I did what I did back in the heyday of Ferguson and the BLM movement, I muted. Back then I only muted those portions of the broadcasts dealing with those issues, but now, because Covid-19 seems to be all we are hearing about, I’ve not listened to any news. I have read headlines and watched the news banners and keep up on social media so I do have some gist of what’s going on.
My son called me right away when the school districts declared they were closing, fearing the preschools would close also, wanting to know if I’d be able to help out with child care during this time. Of course, I said yes. Then my other son, with two school-age children called and asked the same thing. I told him I could but I’d have to bring his nephew with me since his brother had already asked.
I understand there are stimulus packages available to help with the loss of income and revenue, but let’s be honest. These programs are not going to save the majority of the small businesses that operate on a small profit margin. The bars and restaurants, the movie theaters, the wedding photographers and videographers, the cake bakers and florists. Our libraries are closed. I personally find that ludicrous. I can see ceasing programs that involve larger gatherings, but I have never seen 50 people in my local library. It seems to me there are better ways to monitor things. Or here’s a novel idea. Limit the number of patrons allowed to enter and let the mature person decide for themselves what they want. The stores, at least grocery stores, are open and will have to stay open. And now, what was originally several weeks of closure seems to be going the way of several months.
I’ve had several emotional conversations with my sons who, I’m sure out of love, are trying to make me see the errors of my thinking. But what these phone calls did was just make me realize how very much I miss my step-daughter who passed away in November. She would have just listened and let me bitch and vent. She probably would have agreed with me. Not that either of us would be right, it would just be great to have someone to talk to who just accepted what you said and not worried about my mental health. She knew me and knew I was just venting.
So combined with this “new normal” is my still very present grief over Kim’s death, so needless to say, I’m not coping really well.