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How Covid-19 Is Changing Our Lives for the Better
For the past two weeks we’ve been following the shelter-in-place order, so for this period of time we have basically been staying home. There’s actually nowhere to go because everything is closed except for grocery stores and pharmacies, and restaurants that are offering take-out.
We do go out to a grocery store almost every day. We only buy food for a day or two, so we can have an excuse to go to the grocery store the next day. We have a PO Box, so we have to go to the post office every few days as well, and we go to two different farmer’s markets on Saturday and Sunday mornings, but aside from that, we stay home.
We’re finding there are shortages of disinfectants, paper products and basic food staples. We haven’t been able to purchase hydrogen peroxide, toilet paper, or brown rice for more than two weeks. Fortunately we have enough on hand, but are running out, so something has to change.
We miss going out and doing our usual things. No movies, no restaurants, and no parks—all the parks are closed here so we can’t go walk in the redwood forest because the first weekend too many people went to parks. What I miss most is that I can’t go to the library.
But since we can’t go anywhere or do anything, I have a lot of time to do my creative work. I’ve had a big burst of creativity, like going on a retreat. I’m working intensively on our lifely websites, finishing incomplete formatting and content so I can get all the planned lifely websites operating and expanding.
I’m also working on opening many boxes we moved here from storage and start sorting through things I want to keep and things I want to discard instead of continuing to pay $200/month storage fees.
We’re also using our skills to do things ourselves that we had been paying others to do for us.
For example, I used to cut Larry’s hair, but then when we lived apart he got in the habit of going to a barber shop. Now I’m cutting his hair again because all the barber shops are closed.
We’re cooking more food from scratch or just eating when we feel like eating and not even making typical meals. I love to cook so I’m actually experimenting with new recipes I don’t usually have time for. I’ve been wanting a spice rack since we moved here 2 1/2 years ago and Larry finally finished building my spice rack! I love it! But we SHOULD be eating all our meals made from scratch, so cover-19 has just forced us into doing something we’ve been wanting to do and given us time to do it.
Larry’s sister is planting food like crazy. We actually have space around the house—I think the property is about 2 acres, but much of it hasn’t been planted. Now this year she’s turning the meadow into food production and has been planting fruit trees and olive trees. This is great for all of us who live here.
I’m seeing that all of these things we could have been doing all along and are all very lifely activities, but it was too easy to just go buy food.
I don’t know how long we will be organizing our lives around Covid-19 but I don’t think we’re going to go back to the way things were. Old patterns have been broken. We’re not only thinking differently, we are acting differently. Part of our lifely philosophy is to live in a way that is less reliant on centralized industrialization, and be more self-reliant. Covid-19 is actually forcing all of us to take care of ourselves and each other and I look forward to that spirit continuing.
Larry and I are spending more time together, doing simple things like going for walks and creating a food preparation routine of cooking and dishwashing. We’re reading more and discussing things we’re learning. We have more time to give each other more attention and we both love this.
And we’re finally having time to get our affairs in order. While we have no plans to succumb to cover-19, we want to make sure that everything goes as we want it to when the time comes, for whatever reason.
Our shelter-in-place order has now been extended through the month of April, but that’s fine. We like creating our own lives and not having our attention drawn to the industrial consumer world. Life just feels quiet and peaceful and closer to nature.
After writing this, later in the evening, I was noticing how good it felt to be living here with Larry and his family. How stable I feel having a roof over my head and dinner on the table that I can eat if I want to, and people to talk with. Having Larry's mom asking me how she can help. I feel well protected here. I know a lot of other people don't have this degree of protection and help right now, so I am very grateful for it.