coronavirus

COVID-19 and the Glad Game

Who watched the movie Pollyanna growing up? Pollyanna had a rough life after becoming an orphan, but she somehow made time to play the “Glad Game,” no matter how bad things got. There was always something to be glad about, and Pollyanna would find it! Three days into the Great Coronavirus Quarantine of 2020, I’ve already had some tough lows. My blog traffic is down about 60% (and dropping), I will probably not make it into D.C. to see the cherry blossoms this year, and my first ever press trip has been postponed at a date TBD. However, I am finding so many things to be glad about. So to cheer us all up, here are a few! What would you add?

10. We are #AloneTogether

I’m incredibly encouraged at how people are finding ways to band together and help each other at a time when we have to be apart. Restaurants are doing everything they can to keep serving food and deliver it safely, multiple fitness trainers are offering FREE in-home workout programs and ideas, and Disney+ released its huge money-maker Frozen II to its streaming service months early to bring joy to children and parents alike! Here are some of my favorite ways I’ve personally experienced these kinds of things:

  • My gym, Crunch, is offering free streaming apps, refunding members for the days the gym is closed, and trainers are using video chat for in-home training. Exercise boosts your immunity after all!
  • My friends at Marie Mae Company, my favorite give-back company that helps victims of human trafficking, just came out with care packages so your friends, co-workers, kids’ teachers, etc. can get a little surprise pick-me-up in the mail. Follow them on Instagram @mariemaecompany!
  • My eco-friendly soap-making friends at Truly-Life are sending out their new liquid soap kit with every single order until the virus is under control! Follow them on Instagram @trulylife2008!
New Liquid Soap Kit
9. I Get to Spend All Next Week with My Husband

If you’ve been around us much, you know my husband and I are “that couple.” We love to be together! We love to hold hands, we kiss each other often, and we say “I love you” as often as possible. We don’t really need time away from each other; we would totally be fine cooped up in our condo together for weeks on end! Unfortunately, Steve’s job is not one that can be done from home, so his employer is staggering office time: this week half of the employees will be in the office (while practicing social distancing), and next week the other half will go in. Of course that could change, but next week I’m planning to have my husband home with me the whole time!

Can’t get enough time together!
8. I’ve had Time to Focus on Writing My Books

I write all day, every day, almost without exception, and I love it! But the blog takes up so much of my time, and I really can’t handle it all on my own and still devote enough time to writing my books. Until now, that is! No travel for a while means I have plenty of time to dedicate to writing my books. What creative outlets are you having fun with in quarantine?

Anyone up for a spy thriller with a strong female lead?
7. People are Helping People

I’m so encouraged every time I hear that someone who hoarded toilet paper or hand sanitizer has donated it to a church, charity, or hospital. My church is making contact with every single member to make sure they have what they need. They even created a dedicated e-mail address and phone number to call if any of us needs absolutely anything during this uncertain time. Friends are checking on friends. People are finding ways to be kind, and it makes my heart happy.

These are my writing friends from my writing retreat in Vermont a few weeks ago! We have a group text going to encourage each other from afar!
6. There is Very Little about Politics in the News

The biggest bonus of all the COVID-19 coverage is that there is very little in the news about typical politics! Even the media at the press conferences are being kinder and calmer when the President and his team are speaking. I was dreading this election season (which basically already started as soon as the last election was decided) because the media is such an embarrassing and discouraging entity, and people will do or say anything to keep their opponent from getting elected. This whole experience has given all of us–including the politicians–a reality check about what’s worth fighting for.

Also, I’ve finally found a positive, helpful, factual news source thanks to all this!

Check out Smart Her News!
5. I have a Home to be Quarantined In

The inconceivable devastation in Tennessee after their March 2-3 tornadoes is no longer in the headlines, but it’s still the reality for so many Tennesseans from Nashville (where my parents grew up and where I have many childhood memories) to Wilson County (where I grew up going to church and still have so many friends) to Putnam County (where I went to college and where the tornadoes hit with the most force, damage, and loss of life). Many people lost their homes and will have to tear down instead of repair them. I can’t imagine what it’s like for them right now when they have no home and are starting from scratch. I’m thankful for my little condo.

4. We Have Wi-Fi

Y’all, I remember life before wi-fi. I even remember life before we had wired Internet in our house growing up! In fact, my parents lost the wi-fi they had a few years ago, and they just got it back less than a year ago! So I know how to be truly grateful for the privilege of wi-fi. We can do so many things now that were not a possibility 10 or 20 years ago. FaceTime is an absolute game changer! We can stay connected on social media. We can still visit museums, historic homes, and more with virtual tours online! We can have doctor’s visits online. We can all be grateful for our incredible technology!

Can’t make it to D.C. for your class trip? You can tour the Smithsonians, Library of Congress, National Gallery of Art, and more all online!
3. Airline Tickets are Flexible, and Prices Will Stay Low for a While

Travelers, rejoice! Book now for future trips and know you can change your plans with no change fee if you need to. And all signs point to tickets prices staying low for a long time to come! Start making plans for when all this starts to calm down. Sign up for price drop e-mails, keep tabs on your preferred airline’s rules, and support small businesses using your rewards credit card so you can rack up the points to use when this is all over!

The sun is rising on lower airline prices!
2. My Husband’s Emergency Retina Surgery Came at the Right Time

There’s never a good time for emergency surgery to save one’s sight, but if it had to happen, we are glad it happened when it did. His retina started detaching on Thursday, March 4; the surgery had to happen Saturday, March 6. One week earlier, we were snowbound in Vermont. One week later, and the COVID panic came in a flurry of hysteria. Steve can’t fly for one month after surgery to protect the gas bubble in his eye that’s holding everything in place while it heals, so it might as well have happened when we aren’t flying anyway!

Ready for sight-saving surgery March 6!
1. God has It All Under Control

I know it doesn’t seem like it right now while we’re in the thick of it, but I take so much comfort in knowing that even though all this is beyond my control, it’s not beyond God’s. I’m still not panicking, and I’m glad I can know for sure that everything will be okay in the end. Eventually, this will just be a blip on the radar screen of life!

What are you glad about in this whole situation? Comment below and SHARE this post on social media to encourage others!

Want more? Check out my Health and Wellness Page for all my posts about COVID-19 and how we’ll all get through this together!

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