Well, today is starting off slightly better than yesterday. There’s that. And I still have four big cans of coffee in my pandemic stockpile. There’s that. And I got out of bed this morning. There’s that. And I am sitting in front of this computer and blogging. There’s that. (As you can see, I am expressing gratitude for the little things. This is one of the many tips experts give to help improve your overall mental health during this pandemic.)
I read a news article yesterday that the citizens of Wuhan, the Chinese city where the coronavirus outbreak first started, have finally been freed from their lockdown after ten weeks, and can pretty much carry on with their lives. Has it been only ten weeks? It feels like TEN YEARS have passed since our world has been turned upside down.
As I have written before (and even quoted in New Yorker magazine, no less!) : “To be honest, I kinda suck at this whole reality business.” I have always sought comfort and refuge in virtual worlds when reality bites, which is, of course, one of the reasons I started this blog. But it seems to me that, to add insult to injury, reality is punching back, hard, lately. Reality is not playing “fair” (as if there were any fair-play rules to this).
In case you haven’t noticed, in addition to “news and views on social VR, virtual worlds, and the metaverse” (as the tagline of my blog states), I have started to use this blog as a diary of my daily experiences during this pandemic. I will admit it: I am feeling completely overwhelmed and powerless. Many of you no doubt feel the same.
Another thing that I have noticed is that I can get a jumpstart on my day if I start with a blogpost first thing in the morning. It gets my creative juices flowing, I feel a small sense of accomplishment (hey, at least I completed something!), and I find that small boost helps me face the day, as I work from home for my university library system.
I am signed in to my work email all day, and I am also signed in to the virtual reference chat software my library uses to answer any reference questions that pop up from our faculty, staff, and students (who are also working from home). Lately, I feel like one of those bored teenagers hanging out in front of the 7-11 in those pre-pandemic days, hanging out in chat, waiting for reference questions to come in. There was an initial flurry of questions and problems from patron as the physical libraries shut down, but now it is relatively quiet. Perhaps it will pick up in May, when the summer session starts. I hope so.
I have decided to completely avoid the news today (which will be a tall order). I am going to finish my blogpost, refill my coffee mug, and try my damnedest to focus on my work day.
I hope that all of you out there, reading this, are doing well, or at least, are doing okay. This is going to be a mental health marathon, not a sprint.