What I am about to tell you is hurting my ego, but for some reason I need to let it out. I woke up yesterday morning with the following sequence of thoughts: “coronavirus; apocalypses now; my ADHD brain needs proteins; it may be hard to find them; big patio! PLANT EGGS.”
And this is probably hurts more: I reflected, in probably 88 milliseconds: “Why can’t we plant eggs? We only need to keep them warm! Is there a technology? Could there be one? Wait. This is stupid. Just buy a chicken.”
I snapped out of it. I got up, fed the cats, made coffee and headed over my desk. I had to edit a live stream of Joey McIntyre chatting with two fans and I thought, “Great; I could use a little bit of fun.” However, one of them – from New York – said she had gone to Target and couldn’t find toilette paper.
And I lost it.
For dark times like these, I’ve been getting ready my whole life. Meaning: I have daydreamed about the end of the world since I can recall, thinking, “I’ll be ready; I know it’s going to come.”
Did I hoard food, did I buy masks or build a bunker? Nope. I don’t even have batteries for my flashlight… which I don’t think I have.
And I know how chaos looks like in Argentina. In December of 2001, the country experienced a huge and traumatic economic crisis. We had seven presidents in a week. People lost their savings, jobs; there were riots and looting. A pandemic, could definitely trigger that kind of behavior.
So, I went to the supermarket before the doors would open to be the first in line, and it was insane. I had to wait in my car for twenty minutes just to enter the parking lot. I bought essentials groceries for two months, and then I drove to another store to get five cartons of cigarettes. (If I am going to quit, I am going to do it on my own terms.)
Later I talked to the Wicked Witch of Santa Fe – to whom I call ‘mom’ when I feel really, really, lonely – and she said,
“We still don’t know what’s going to happen”
“We do! DO THE MATHS!”, I replied
“This is going to bring you down. Try looking at the bright side”
And I lost it, again. But, quietly. It was a meltdown on a leash. I replied to her,
“Listen, throughout my life, I never asked why. Shit rained over me non-stop and I never complained saying ‘why me; why did they; why this.’ I took it all looking at the bright side, what I’ve learned from those traumas and how I could help others. But this? Fuck the bright side of this. Tell me, what is the bright side of this?”
She didn’t say anything back…
Because she didn’t know what to answer.
How could she? She’s allergic to almost everything, and I am pretty certain she’s also allergic to opinions that don’t fit her tiny brain. Hence, she avoids reflecting and I avoid her… until I feel really, really, lonely.
Why can’t I see the bright side of this? Because I’ve already been on a voluntary lockdown for a year, and I just got out. Allow me to explain:
Long story short, on 2019 I hibernated. I voluntarily remained at my home alone, trying to heal decades of trauma. I only left my house to do the groceries and to find a proper diagnosis for my brain (after two decades of searching)
The first week of March was the beginning of a new era. I got out. I opened the door and I faced life again, with plans!
First, I faced a crowd. I went to the mall to get a new laser printer. I was so proud of it…
Second: I took a test! I wanted to take a course to get certified by the Oxford University in the use of English. With a brain still recovering and the ADHD meds that weren’t (nor aren’t) working yet. I survived three hours of questions, essays and interviews; and I nailed it with an 84%. This allowed me to sign up and I did not miss a single class, because I had TWO.
Third: I went back to figure skate training! My own form of meditation… And I didn’t miss a single training either, because I also had TWO!
My life had just begun again! (I want to yell “literally” so bad…)
So, excuse me if I don’t want to seek the bright side of what coronavirus is doing to our daily life.
I spent four decades in this planet looking at the bright side of everything; always being grateful for gathering the strength to keep going, to be alive… Do humans need a pandemic to do that?!
After the groceries and “the talk”, I began writing about this whole thing trying to shake it off. It makes me mad that countries didn’t react sooner… and, I got to thinking, “What’s going to happen? How am I going to face this? Will I have to hibernate again?
The draft began to pull me downer, so I did the reasonable thing: “Netflix.”
I scattered my existence over the couch to watch Sherlock Holmes. I’ve been doing this for the past weeks to get use to the British accent, because that’s how they speak at the academy that I cannot attend anymore.
Then at some point, I heard Sherlock saying,
I believe I also heard a click on my brain…
You see… Twenty years ago, I decided to put away my law degree and finally write for a living. Students and professionals would hire me as a ghost writer to research and write their thesis. “Thesis.” I was an excellent writer… “in Spanish.”
And that is the problem, the fear I face as a blogger and writer today: I am writing in a language I’ve been learning on my own, and I don’t feel confident.
In fact, sometimes the lack of vocabulary makes me feel I am not a writer any more… Will you come back if my grammar doesn’t have a small print stating “she’s a writer; pinky swear”.
But this situation we are going through, it makes me feel there is no more time to fear. I cannot continue saving drafts because there could be some comma in the wrong place. I need to start hitting the “publish” button at this blog.
Wait… Is that a bright side?
I still need to do something about that chicken though.