Pangs

Today we went grocery shopping as we usually do on Mondays but we went earlier because as the day progresses it gets busier. There was a sense of pressure, to not dilly dally so as to decrease our time there, not fun and leisurely, not normal. There was an overall vibe of urgency, the energy was palpable. Everyone was polite and orderly, but there was an underlying unease a hurriedness.

There were 4 shopping carts filled with hand sanitizers in the middle of the main path between the food and health sections for easy access to purchase. I thought that was smart and convenient.

There were many empty shelves, it was a big contrast from last week. The lunch meat section was barren, I didn’t know people ate so many sandwiches? We don’t eat meat and don’t eat sandwiches, maybe the occasional PB&J, lol.

Or maybe it’s the feeding kids home from school. That’s so many extra meals when you think about it. I remember those days when one of my main priorities was feeding the critters 🙂 Now I’m picturing in my imagination all of the kids pestering parents with I’m bored, there’s nothing to do 🙂 Ah, sweet times, lol. (It got to be a challenge entertaining them back when they were little, but wow, I miss those days now!)

We got everything we needed, no worries, there was enough.

I debated on if I should go on my nature walk and decided it would be okay. It was different though, it felt strained because every time I crossed paths with someone, I felt like I needed to keep more distance, 6 feet is more than the room on the sidewalk, but I didn’t want to appear like I thought they were contagious? I also didn’t want them to be uncomfortable if they thought I was contagious, so would it be best to verge away into the grass, like a swerve to create 6 feet? And since I’m Asian, people may think I have a greater chance of being a Chinese carrier, xenophobia…omg, the things that rapid-fire through my mind. It caused me a little anxiety. There were more people out than usual too, like 3 times as much which was different.

I ended up skirting the edge of the path as far as possible without leaving it. It was a beautiful sunny, breezy, getting warmer, closer to spring day. The contrast between what’s happening and appreciating the spectacular loveliness of nature and sunshine had my heart panging. Was it okay for me to be out walking and enjoying, or was that even risky? Then feeling despair about others going through trauma while here I am taking care of me?

They will be prohibiting all on-site dining at restaurants and bars plus closing all gyms, theaters (movie and performance), breweries, coffeehouses and casinos for a month beginning tomorrow in Colorado. I wonder what will happen at my job, it’s not a restaurant, but they eat on-site and more than 10 people gather in a small area at the buffet. I’m hoping they close it, for now, it’s not safe. Over the weekend I felt we were all at risk and potentially contributing to the spread. It doesn’t sit well with me ethically. I’m debating on what to do if it’s business as usual there.

I Skyped with the kids yesterday and that comforted me greatly. They are doing well thankfully. And it looks like they will be working from home, that’s a relief.

It feels like it did when we had hurricanes and flooding in Louisiana, the waiting to see, the gnawing tension and uncertainty. Watching as it develops, feeling gut-punched when you witness others going through tragedy, wishing it was not happening and not knowing how to help or if you can. This is bigger though, it’s global and a virus is invisible, you can’t see it coming, it’s more difficult to track. We just aren’t fully equipped and ready, but we’re learning for the next time.

All I keep thinking is please let it be enough to help mitigate the impact. And please let us learn and drastically change what we’re doing so we can prevent suffering in the future.

Sending all of my love to all 💗

Michelle Miyagi
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