At this point in the COVID-19 isolation (I’ve lost count, but it feels like day 432-ish), it wouldn’t be surprising if you have flown through all of your initial forms of entertainment and ways to keep busy. If you’re anything like me, you’ve plowed through two or three Netflix docuseries, you’ve baked enough cookies for a bake sale that now have nowhere to go except your tummy, and you’ve cleaned out your closet, realized you have nowhere to take the items you pulled, and simply put it all back to where it was.
Our digital world loves to joke about #QuarantineLife, making it easy to sometimes forget why we are in this new normal in the first place, and the great severity of the situation around us. As you stay put in your home searching for something to do, consider reaching out to some of the people in your life that might have slipped under your radar. We are all playing a different part of fighting through this painful time. If you have any of these folks in your life, pick up your phone to give them a call or shoot them a text or DM, and let them know you are thinking of them.
Without a doubt, nurses, doctors, and anyone else in the medical field deserves a huge applause of gratitude, but we can’t forget all of the other people who truly are putting their lives on the line to protect us all and provide us with the essentials we need either. Postal workers, truck drivers, and delivery workers are all putting themselves in dangerous situations to get our everyday needs delivered to our doors. Let’s also not forget grocery store employees that are working in hazardous environments so that we can still stock our pantries during this time.
Working in heartbreaking conditions, these professionals are still pushing through each day to lead us all through this pandemic. If you are noticing your neighbor still going into work each day or have someone close to you that is fighting on the front line across the country, reach out to check on them and let them know you are grateful.
Loved Ones Living in Virus Hot Spots
Of course, it seems common knowledge to make sure your loved ones living in big cities are staying inside and staying healthy. But, the virus is spreading quickly, creating new hot spots daily. Stay in tune to the news and the whereabouts of the virus. Don’t assume anyone is safe during this time. Consider creating a group chat with your extended family members or friends that are across the country to keep everyone up to date on each other’s health and safety.
High School and College Seniors
If you can think back to March, April, and May of your senior year of high school or college, I’m sure you are flooded with memories of big “lasts.” For many of these academia seniors, their final moments that should be celebrated are now either put on hold or canceled indefinitely. Graduations, recitals, final competitions, and proms have all been put on hold. Though it’s being done to keep people safe, think of those graduating students that are tremendously heartbroken seeing these events they’ve been dreaming of fade before their eyes. Send a quick DM to let them know you are thinking of them and remind them that their life will not be defined by the lack of these moments.
Grandparents or Elderly Neighbors
I’m sure the elderly loved ones in your life are heavy on your heart during this time. Of course, the thing you want to do is go and spend time with them, which unfortunately would make matters worse. To keep spreading the love and reminding your family and friends that you care about them, try to get them on Zoom or FaceTime so they can feel like you are together. A picture of you making one of their iconic recipes sent by text or email will make their day. Don’t forget about any neighbors that don’t have family assisting them. Offer to pick up their groceries or other essentials so they don’t have to leave the house.
Mom Friends at Home With Their Kiddos
Shonda Rhimes nailed it on the head on Twitter when she was one hour into homeschooling her children saying, “Teachers deserve to make a billion dollars a year. Or a week.” This is a tough transition for both parents and students. If you have a friend who is now inside with her kids (who are, of course, adorable, but very high energy) send over a funny meme that will make her laugh or schedule a happy hour FaceTime. There is bound to be some stress and anxiety built up that she will appreciate getting to let loose with some girl time.
Your Friend That is Newly Unemployed
Unfortunately, a work-from-home option isn’t realistic for everyone’s job. If you have a friend that was let go during the pandemic, be sure to reach out to them. Offer as much hope as you can and provide however you might be able to. Can you afford to have some groceries delivered for them? The smallest acts of kindness can go so far during this time.
It’s a scary time for small business owners of any kind. Maybe your neighbor had to close the doors to their cafe, or your relative had to shut down their book shop indefinitely. Do whatever you can to support these businesses, their owners, and their employees. A card letting them know you are here for them or purchasing a gift card to use once our world gets put back together could really help raise their spirits.
Friends or Family That Live Alone
It doesn’t matter what season of life you are in. Living by yourself in this season cannot be easy. Your coworker that is stuck in her studio apartment by herself, or your relative that is unfortunately going through this crisis solo needs your attention. Make sure they have all of the essentials they need and are finding ways to stay busy. Do you have any TV shows or movies you just finished that you can suggest they watch? A phone call for even a few minutes will help them feel like they aren’t as alone as they thought.
All of the Extroverts in Your Life
For anyone that is an extrovert, this time away from socializing is torture. You probably have noticed the friends that are taking this situation the hardest are the friends that are usually the life of the party. Give them a call and make sure they are holding up OK and staying busy. Help them fill up their extroverted energy cup by doing a virtual game night or a FaceTime dinner party. Use technology in your favor to spend time together. Your extroverted bestie will forget you are miles apart.
Let’s unite to fight this virus together. Keep sharing hope and love anyway that you can.