The Little Things

By: Erin Rose Hennessy

I couldn’t fall asleep last night. I read a couple of chapters of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and got myself good and drowsy. Before the novel coronavirus hit our state, I had finally gotten myself to a good sleeping place. It took years of working through nightmares and anxiety before I got to a place where I could lie down and go to sleep and likely sleep through the night.

Even now, though I still try hard to keep to my bedtime routine, not allow myself to read about the latest coronavirus chaos after dinner, and work through my anxieties on my blog or in my journal – I notice that my sleeping habits have changed. A lot of things that my body did normally have changed. I’ve completely given up on my diet and just focus on healthy food choices. My feet yell at me in the evenings if I don’t move them enough during the day. And everyone I talk to notices similar things. Our bodies are all under a massive amount of stress, uncertainity and worry for the coming weeks and months.

The governor is due to give a chat this afternoon. I’m still worried he’s going to make us lock down although he has praised us for our social distancing habits. Apparently some of the best habits in the country. Winter makes us somewhat socially distant every year so I suppose we’re practiced at this?

So, as I spent more hours than I wanted to be spending trying to fall asleep, I thought about the little things I miss as we buckle in to social distance “likely through Easter”.

I miss being able to walk through my neighborhood and parks without having to avoid everyone and make sure we’re six feet apart. I miss going to work and seeing all the kids every day. I miss my parents. I got to stand six whole feet away from my mother and catch up for a few minutes today. I hadn’t seen her in almost two weeks. I miss financial stability. Sure, I didn’t get paid big bucks, but it kept me in rent, chocolate, and Netflix, and I was good. I miss seeing friends whenever I want. We’ve started weekly virtual happy hours which I’m eagerly looking forward to the second one this Friday. I miss walking down to the library to get books. I miss taking myself out to lunch as a special treat. I miss my extended family. We were supposed to go to Denver to meet my new baby cousin in April. That’s likely not going to happen.

But I keep reminding myself “this too, will pass”. There are signs of hope everywhere. Bears in the windows of homes and apartments in our neighborhood so kids can “go on a bear hunt”. Volunteers making sure the homeless and unemployed are taken care of. Donations of needed goods and supplies. Friends post things daily on Facebook with the express purpose of making others laugh.

Now I think I’m going to go for a walk on a bear hunt myself!

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