Trying Times & Trauma

I’ve over the blown up image of the COVID-19 pathogen. Pick a new image for articles, I don’t think this is adding anything to the conversation. And there is a lot of conversation.

It takes a lot of energy to handle a crisis, and not everyone has that energy to spare.

I don’t have that energy, I’m using what I have right now for working, some for healing, some for a little bit of future planning, and some for keeping up with the potential for my job to shift to a work from home situation for likely 2-3 weeks. My introverted self would love for that to happen. What I don’t have the energy for is panicked trips to crowded stores to purchase things I already have or have access to through friends and family, to fret about the what-ifs or to do anything other than quietly transition to the new social normal, hoping that when we transition again to another normal I won’t have spread a virus to anyone. I’m not concerned for myself, but I do not want to transmit this to anyone!

I did make a short trip to the grocery store this morning before 7. It was already crowded, and there were not enough employees there for the volume of traffic, so the checkout line was long indeed. Thank goodness for self-checkout! I needed a few normal items, and bought only what I needed to get through a few days. Yes, it’s good to be prepared. But in an emergency I can survive in my house for quite some time, and if I have to self-quarantine I can do it for a few weeks, likely. I’m hyper vigilant due to the PTSD, and sometimes it pays off? I’m also a bit of a germophobe, so not a whole lot feels different for me. And I already practice a lot of social distancing!

PTSD has reduced my capacity for stress, and a pandemic, no matter how little it might affect me personally, is still a cause of additional stress, even if indirectly. I’ve received countless emails about what every organization I’ve ever interacted with is doing about it, and my friends are concerned, or busy sending memes, and it’s hard to avoid the news to some extent, even though I rarely seek it out. I was up early in the odd irony of a day off, so I ran errands and did chores and got some exercise and now and ready for a bit of rest.

And that’s what this is a good time for, rest. As events and classes and work and other activities get cancelled, it’s a good time for rest. I realize not everyone can rest, and post-trauma doesn’t always allow it, unfortunately. I’m still working at being able to rest, and being able to acknowledge when I need to, and being able to. Hyper vigilance doesn’t like to rest at all. But this is a good time to practice, a good time to pause and reflect and evaluate and course correct and take good care and notice what is important and to notice what you need. Sleep, drink water, be grateful, and be kind.

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Photo by Ann H on Pexels.com

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