Thoughts on Quarantining

Yes, we’ve been being careful.

Not going anywhere without a mask, staying away from group activities, limiting our shopping in real stores, and still…

Here I am in quarantine, waiting on test results, and best case scenario–out of quarantine on Dec. 1.

Thoughts are swirling….

Perhaps I am being too cautious and don’t really need to do this? I had my mask on. It was about a five-minute encounter with an old lady who shouldn’t have answered her door because she had the virus. (What am I saying? I’m an old lady! But she is older than me, so that makes it ok?) Even more so, she shouldn’t have coughed at me when she opened the door.  She opened the door to tell me she shouldn’t be opening the door…

It is better to err on the side of caution, isn’t it? This is how the virus spreads–people think they are the exception and don’t bother to follow what the health experts have told us to do. Or worse, they flaunt their unbeliefs and don’t social distance, don’t wear masks, and call the virus a hoax in the name of personal freedom.

I’m isolating myself, even though it seems silly because I feel fine,  but I don’t want to be considered one of those people. Just suppose my dear 88-year-old neighbor came down with this because of me…

I feel like a slacker because I’ve canceled things I had committed to doing. Even though everyone assures me that’s just the way it is in 2020, I remain unpersuaded and feeling guilty. (But maybe I feel guilty because I really like staying home with no responsibilities?)

The truth is, I wake every morning and in my groggy, still half-asleep state, I think: Ok, what do I have to do today? And then I relax when I realize the answer is NOTHING…

It really is forced rest and I’ve never been good at it. It’s not that I’m a whirlwind of 24/7 activity, but I have things to do and I need to do them. As I was thinking about this, I remembered an essay I wrote about this very thing a few years ago and I went to reread it. (It’s here if you want to read it too.)

Yes, even then in the midst of busy-ness I was unhappy about the forced rest because I had plenty of things on my to do list…

Perhaps it is the feeling we all share–that we are important and what we have to do is important and nothing had better get in the way of that importance.

Perhaps it is the feeling of guilt that many of us have when we sit and do nothing–we learned it years ago, maybe?

Conscience: What are you doing?
Me: Nothing.
Conscience: Well, you’d better get up and do something. What will people think? Are you lazy? Don’t you know that through laziness the rafters sag and the house leaks because of idle hands?
Me: No. I’m just resting for a few minutes.
Conscience: What if someone sees you just sitting here doing nothing when the kitchen floor needs scrubbing, the house is messy, and your bed isn’t even made! You’d better have two or even three projects going, you know, so people won’t think you are a retired bum.
Me: Hmmm. Maybe I am a retired bum who is quarantined for a reason…So I can make peace with rest. And by the way, Get behind me, Satan…

It’s long past time to let this stuff go…

Many times during this pandemic lockdown time of 2020 I’ve wondered what it is God is trying to tell us. Sometimes we don’t know what it might be until hindsight makes it plain, but I’m thinking that, without a doubt, this is to be a time of reassessment; of determining what is important; a season of quiet. God called it Sabbath Rest. He said: Stop doing and just be. Reacquaint yourself with Me.

It’s become increasingly clear that we can’t. We keep trying to find workarounds and solutions and new ways to keep on doing. Our stuff is important, after all…

I thought I was doing fine–cutting back on activities, staying away from unnecessary store trips, not eating out–you know, the stuff we are all doing? But then real quarantine happened and I realized that I can’t go Anywhere. And what is important, anyway? What if I like staying home too much? Its hard enough to fight my introvert tendencies…

sun in dark clouds

Of course, some parts of living can’t just stop. And finding ways to help each other cope and survive are crucial, but to be honest for a minute: I am feeling guilty for not living my old life and I am fearful of giving it up. I don’t really like waiting either…

I think that could be part of the problem with those who refuse to wear masks and think the virus is a hoax: that fear and unwillingness to admit that things may change. We like to think we are in control; our feelings of control are directly related to our importance.

God is changing things up. He is telling us, “I am the Lord of the sky and the sea. Call on me, and let me be your rest.” He also tells us over and over: “Do Not Fear.”

Turn off the news. Breathe in deeply. Say your gratitudes. Let your need for importance evaporate into the night breeze.

Let God have the control button.

6 thoughts on “Thoughts on Quarantining

  1. A – I sure hope you are not positive and don’t end up suffering through Covid or Long Covid.
    B – how could a hoax kill this many people world wide? Never mind if the media was controlling one country and giving weird information. We have access to news from many countries and many languages.
    C – personal rights need to be checked at the door for the collective good of society. I truly hadn’t realized how selfish people had gotten till Covid19 hit. It’s sad that they can’t see what is right in front of them.
    D – love your conscious conversation. I have it regularly with myself about just being and not always having to “do”. But truly I am happy when I am doing but turns out I am ok with just doing at home. I’d be happy to not have to leave until spring.
    Take care of yourself, rest. This phrase has stuck with me since my early church going years. “Be still and know that I am God”. Good time to spend time thinking.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. So happy your test is negative! I loved your talk with self; it’s exactly what my self (or Satan) says to me. Who programmed us with this nonsense, anyway? (I hear my Dad’s voice, “What are you doing, just sitting there?”) Frankly, I love it when I wake up in the morning and realize I don’t have anything on today’s schedule, and that I don’t have to do ANYTHING. Such freedom! I recently rediscovered making sourdough bread (I know, it’s a “thing” during COVID but I don’t follow trends). The nice thing about that is, I can mix the dough, and then it sits for many, many hours. Then, if that voice asks me what I’m doing, I can reply (as I sit there looking at the sky) “making bread”.
    I love the last part of your post. It made my shoulders relax back down into place, and I felt myself take a deep breath. Thanks for the reminder. Sending love, from one introvert to another.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Hah! I love that your dad’s voice asks you those questions! My own dad, though sometimes strict, was not above lying down on the couch with a magazine for cover.
      And I discovered sourdough when I retired. (But gave it up to lose weight) though I must admit it is genius to say you’re making bread while looking at the sky.
      I feel like we must know each other. Do we? ❤️

      Like

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