Because Our Mental Health is Just as Important

I started working from home 6 business days ago. 8 weekdays. Over a lifetime ago for an extrovert.

Today is Friday as I write this. Tuesday of this week I was fighting tears all day. My mental focus has been a mess. My mental well-being even worse. I live alone with my FURmily (and I am so VERY grateful for my FURmily) and am usually just fine living alone because of the connections in my life, but I am the kind of individual that is re-energized by the people around me. I love waiting rooms because they give me the opportunity to strike up a conversation with strangers and maybe open my world to something new. I have not many hobbies myself because truely meeting people and learning what makes them tick is my hobby – what brings them joy, or when truly open with each other what may even bring them vulnerability and fear. Humanity is amazing, and the opportunity to learn from human individuals SUCH a gift for me.

So – now we bring this girl to a time when social isolation and distancing is so very important to our medical community to be able to respond successfully, to our high risk who may seek safety (often begrudgingly). First of all, I will be one of the first champions of social distancing and it’s importance – not only because of my experience as a cancer survivor but more importantly by walking beside those I care about with COPD, asthma, cystic fibrosis or maybe just the year they were born in. There are amazing individuals out there that deserve our loving and kind support – whether it is easy for us to isolate or not. This is truly a time where we can choose to behave as selfless or selfish indivuduals.

So I am working hard to choose to be selfless, self-isolate and not potentially spread anything that could harm someone down the road.

But I must also choose to look after my mental health or none of this will mean anything to me.

Today I spoke with my adopted Mom (a very special woman that is one of the adopted mom’s I have been blessed with in my life), and she encouraged me to share the story of how I am keeping not only my mental health but encouraging the strengthening of others as well.

Wednesday of this week I put a sign on my front lawn. I encourage you all, in your own community to begin a gathering. This has been, I know, a lifesaver for me as it is something I look forward to each day. Coming together with neighbours to connect as humans in a time that none of us has lived through before. One of my neighbours is a senior lady that, typically very active in the community, hadn’t been out in over a week. It is about gathering, supporting, sharing and strengthening in mental health. Community.
Respecting the need for physical distancing, understanding the need for human connection. It brings us together (apart), especially those of us that live alone. It is finding, not only survival, but the “thirval” in this time.
May you each find this in your own community – to a time of respect for personal safety, love & community.

Signing off with much love,
Stay healthy, spread joy!

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