When quarantine first began, I started tallying the days on my bedroom wall. Work was closed, events were canceled, and, to be fair, I wasn’t about to go out into the world anyway. I stayed at home, I went on walks, I watched the movies I’d always wanted to watch and learned to make whatever the TikTok meal du jour was.
As I settled into my new life, I realized I kind of liked it. Okay…I really liked it. The family time. The empty schedule. The absolute lack of FOMO. The forced shutdown was, in some ways, a little present from the universe, offering me the time I needed to reset and recharge, figure out what I wanted in life, and just breathe for a bit.
There is privilege that comes with a positive quarantine experience. Though I had many moments of stress regarding money and health, things were okay in my life for the most part. I was young and healthy, my job would return eventually, my parents were kind enough to let me return to my childhood bedroom, my sister and boyfriend were around for companionship, and my household was on the same page when it came to staying in and staying safe.
We need to acknowledge this privilege. At the same time, we can acknowledge that the positive lessons we learned and sweet moments we had were important in their own way.
When I encounter a particularly positive experience, I try to make note of the things that impacted the situation so I can keep doing them. While the plan to integrate my wellness retreat routine seamlessly into my everyday life has failed time and time again, there are parts that have stuck.
When I encounter a particularly positive experience, I try to make note of the things that impacted the situation so I can keep doing them. While the plan to integrate my wellness retreat routine seamlessly into my everyday life has failed time and time again, there are parts that have stuck. I’m better off for them.
Without further ado, these are the parts of quarantine I’d like to (if at all possible) try to keep as we reintegrate back into something that…maybe resembles life as we knew it. Thank you, science. Thank you, everyone who has worked to keep us safe. And thank you, introspection.
The best walk of my life took place the day Taylor Swift’s Folklore album came out. My sister and I shared a pair of headphones and listened to the record on loop as we strolled—a quite apropos way to enjoy the content, honestly. When there wasn’t anything to do during quarantine, there were walks. Sunset walks. Early morning walks. Lunch break walks. Solo walks. Family walks. Walks in the rain. Snowy walks. Walks-to-the-mailbox-and-back-and-that’s-good-enough walks.
Walking gets us outside, gets our bodies moving, and gives us a change of scenery. We should not give up the walks.
The small comforts
When you’re planning your pick-up grocery order days in advance, adding a tiny treat can do wonders for morale. Small indulgences should continue. If the fancy cheese will add something special to your evening, enjoy it.
Sweatsuits as normal day wear!!!!!!!!! Always and forever.
The focus on personal space
Keep tending your garden and making your home a place you want to be.
While anyone can bother you when you’re in each other’s company too long, in many cases those who were lucky enough to quarantine with loved ones were lucky indeed. May quality time remain.
The light schedules (for some of us)
With events canceled and work from home eliminating the need for a commute for some, an excess of time became the norm. Oh, the only thing you have planned this weekend is a FaceTime with your best friend? Enjoy the rest of your time doing…whatever you want to do!
After I thought I made a point by noting that quarantine had a certain smell to it, my mom informed me that I was just thinking of the smell of spring. Even so, I believe our lives should smell like spring all the time. Does anyone have a candle recommendation?
There’s something to be said for the geniuses who invented at-home writing clubs, entertaining social media content, fanciful meal kits, and streaming platform watch party features. Keep the good ideas coming.
The lack of pressure
Though there are in person (!) activities (!) on the horizon (!), we can’t let FOMO get the best of us. If you want to stay home, stay home.
For the seemingly mundane moments and the things we didn’t realize we’d miss so very much.