November 30, 2020

20 Things the Pandemic Made Me Do

So, Leute.

I think, at this point, we can safely assume that ALL of us have different lives since the pandemic has been affecting everyone for about nine months now.

In the air of Taylor Swift's "Look What You Made Me Do," here are 
20 Things the Pandemic Made Me Do.

Go to the bathroom just to cough.
(The walls aren't soundproof, but the glares are at least avoided.)

Wear ALL my winter clothes as soon as it started raining or the temperature dropped below 60 degrees F.
("You look like an Eskimo." "Yes, yes, I do. A corona-free Eskimo.")

Keep my mask on to cover acne.
("What?! Oh, I just forgot to take it off...")

Judge people for blowing their nose in public. 
(Read #1: that's what the bathroom is for!)

Re-watch Netflix's Virgin River series. 
(For those of you who can't imagine this being an actual place, anyone who has lived in the true Northern California can attest to the fact that these stories can be more than real!)

Buy flowers for my house.
(I have always been adamantly against decorations and flowers. Enter 2020 with Emily in Paris, exit previous life rules.)

Do a Giveaway on Instagram. AND promoting charities!
(I literally hate sharing. HATE IT. Now I am giving my money and treasured Christmas mugs away.)


Shop online.
(Maybe because of #7, I feel the need to replace what is being sent off?)

Ask my parents to send a care package from the USA.
(They haven't shipped me anything from America since, like, 2012 because of the high cost and I have managed super efficient trips for goods. Not anymore!)

My one day outside of Germany in 2020.
Imagine I am walking around all of those city-tripping places I would normally go to, instead of just Vilsbiburg.
(Normally, I would spend December marching around Christmas markets. Now I get to access the deep reserves of my memories and creativity.)

Buy wrapping paper and actually wrap Christmas gifts for the first time since 2010.
(So much for experiences trumping presents! This year presents are king and the experience is the wild card of it all.)

Start Christmas insanity in October.
(What was the point of waiting?!)

Learn how to administer CoVid-19 rapid tests.
(I make everyone call me Dr. Swags now.)

Not reply to personal emails.
(I don't know why this ended up being a side effect of the pandemic, but my inbox has never been this overflowing and ignored.)

Walk through the Vilsbiburg cemetery.
(Really. First time in five and a half years, and even after my mom loved it when they visited last October.)

Finish my postcards wall collage...again.
(Realized it was better to post the cards on a poster to the wall, instead of directly onto the wall.)

(I swear I did it for the kids...)

Need to paint mermaid nails.
(Just another one of those things that is, all of a sudden, way more important than it ever was before.)

Ride a thrift-store bicycle with flat tires all over Vilsbiburg.
(Kind of not hating it so much anymore!)

I won't lie, I was more hoping that the pandemic would "make me" write more books. And while I definitely got around to reading much more than usual, my writing has been so pandemic-focused. It was difficult to dig into creative stories without the filter of the pandemic shading them. I have been both pleasantly surprised by some of my new activities, as well as annoyed by some changes, but all for the best.

I have said it for several months now, and I will say it again: what we all need the most for ourselves and for each other these days is GRACE. So I have forgiven myself for wanting to buy pretty flowers, I have forgiven the kids who don't have the emotional energy to come to volleyball practice, and I am regularly forgiving myself and everyone else around me for stressed words, overreactions, and under-reactions. 

Hope you are staying safe and well, and please be careful and wise with more holidays approaching!!!

What are some "out-of-character" things the pandemic has made you do? 
Do you think you will keep these new habits up, 
or avoid them if and/or when life gets more back to normal?