When life goes on pause


A blog post on the emotional rollercoaster of a global pandemic is not quite the simple and positive content that I planned on debuting my blog with. But for many reasons, here we are. Obviously the whole concept of COVID-19 and its millions of effects is timely and important, but I know that it's heavy and I also know that it's all you have probably been seeing. I wanted to take the time to express a few thoughts on how it has shaped the last few months for me and maybe many others. To start, and to explain most of the reasoning of this post, in particular, it got me here—to these words on this website.


I have always had difficulty transitioning, in every sense of the word. Growing up, I found it difficult to transition from one stage of my life to another, I had trouble moving on from milestones. I still get sad the day after my birthday and I barely survived my first semester of college away from home. Though it all seems so obvious now, I only learned this about six months ago, and suddenly so many of the challenges in my past became a LOT clearer. I began to understand more about myself and how I react in situations. That explains why the first few weeks of this whole pandemic timeline were extremely difficult for me to digest at the time.


I want to emphasize that it is uncomfortable to express challenges in my own life while so many others have it so much worse, so I'm pointing out that I am just trying to write about my personal growth through my perspective on my wellness and life throughout the past few months. I am fully aware of the unfathomable struggles that so many are facing in countless ways right now. I hope that if I share a bit of my story, I can help others feel like they are not alone, or encourage them to express how they feel as well.


So, in the beginning, as the news grew saturated with COVID-19 alerts, federal regulations and information, social media became flooded with the aftermath of that—advice, insight and reactions. Sensory overload anyone? But seriously, did anyone even realize how overwhelming life became in a matter of days? in a matter of hours?! The uncertainty, the panic and the stress of everyone at once was an insane amount of uncontrolled energy that had nowhere to go but to be spread to each other. On top of every decision and judgment call made, hung the fear of the actual virus. Nevermind the stresses of sudden changed plans, there was a real global pandemic unfolding—and it was truly scary.


Personally, I didn't know where to look, who to listen to, and which advice to follow. I knew how to stay safe, but how should I spend my time? Watch Tiger King and bake banana bread? Apply for a job? Pick up a new hobby? Train for a race? In the beginning, I lost all sense of how I would normally ground myself. For my whole life, I have always tended to live by my routine, a plan, structure. I have always needed certainty and needed to know everything that was going on—I like to be in control of my own life, and I've never tried to change that. I have always liked that part of myself, but though I never felt compelled to change it, I've also never had it challenged like the last few months have done.


This whole time, the world had been grieving losses. The loss of so many lives, the loss of their jobs, of their normalcy and life as we know it. The last two months have been a challenge of how much we can process and evolve when things are out of our control.


Now I have to be honest and admit that this is the first time I have expressed in writing how I have been feeling during all of this, so if it sounds like emotional word vomit, that's because it is! :) My point in coming on here is to document how the last two months have been probably been "bigger" than you realize, and something so much bigger than yourself. I have been able to step back from my tiny little slice of life and finally see the world as something tangible, in its most vulnerable and fragile state. I have always been one of those people that enjoys the comfort and simplicity of their own life, and this has allowed me to see the world as one giant community made of real people. People who get sick, people who struggle and people who come together. It's also made up of people who fight, and people who hate.


Though this is not the end of this long path we have ahead towards returning to normalcy, this is hopefully the end or an end to some of the confusion, the resistance and the long transition.


It doesn't matter if you have been working out for the last seventy days, it doesn't matter if you launched a new business or if all you did was watch shows and enjoy your favorite foods. Personally, I am lucky enough to have a beautiful roof over my head, an amazing support system, and a healthy family, but I struggled through an emotional battle, spent time in an uncomfortable and uncertain position, and I learned. I now see value in the simplest things, I feel extremely thankful for every part of my life, and along the way, I found myself here—with time to share my thoughts with anyone who wants to read them.


I hope for healing and health among all communities, and send prayers to everyone who needs them!


Lauren