COVID-19 Journal, March 31

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March 31, 2020 by 8junebugs

Today is definitely the last day I’ll go out without a mask on.

I held out as long as I could and kept the list short, but today was my day to restock our Trader Joe’s stuff. I got there at 8:45, in time to be about a 12th or so in the non-senior line (I accidentally stopped in the senior line first — BE YE NOT SO STUPID) and was back in my car in about an hour. But there were still too many folks not paying attention to the world around them. The dude behind me had to be reminded (ahem) to back up, but then he stayed a safe distance away. One guy blocked the milk section while, presumably, texting with someone who had a list in their head instead of in his hand, where it belonged.

People are nice enough when you say something, but I resent having to say anything at all.

I deeply resent folks who think they know better than the scientists and data junkies telling us what’s going on and what to expect and when. DEEPLY. They haven’t been wrong yet, but great swaths of the American public feel confident ignoring them.

Yes, I know. We’ve de-funded and de-prioritized robust public education for decades. I KNOW. That doesn’t make it any less infuriating.

I managed Costco a few days ago and it was less of a clusterfuck, but a warehouse can hold four Trader Joe’ses in it, so there’s room to sprawl.

I’ve done a bit of baking but (a) no one wants to eat the results but me and (b) I’m just too wiped to bake instead of doing something else. I could bake, or I could work out. I could bake, or I could sew some face masks. I could bake, or I could set up all the appropriate programs and controls on the Chromebook we got for Grayson, which Graham can’t set up because accessibility settings suck.

I could bake, or I could teach Graham to make scrambled eggs for when Alex turns down the chicken breakfast sausages with cottage cheese.

The food waste that comes with kids — especially picky ones — has always driven me up the wall, but now I’m extra cranky about it…to the point of putting the fear of god into Grayson about dumping his dry cereal instead of saving it for the snack he will inevitably want. He has, to his credit, been very quiet and polite when he’s asked if I’ve had a chance to go to the store yet, or when I’ll be able to. We’ve made it very clear that we’re stocked up for at least two weeks at a time and that time away from home for Mommy means time around people who might have the virus, even if they don’t know it.

This has not expanded anyone’s palate, although I can say I made tofu tikka masala last week and Graham called it surprisingly tasty. I haven’t made him eat tofu in YEARS. I’m not sure I’ve bought it on purpose since college — I was an accidental vegetarian for a while when I was broke and it was cheaper than chicken.

We’re all getting a bit snippy, though. Weekends feel harder than they used to — no playdates, no parks, no indoor kid gyms. Weekend weather has also been crappy, making hiking or walks or just playing outside less enticing.

As well, it’s getting harder to stay motivated for my training plan and cross-training needs. I know me — it’s not that I lack internal motivation, but external motivation is so, so much more effective. I won’t quit on an erg piece at the boathouse, sitting next to someone whose 5k is within a half-second of my own. When my concentration starts to fail, I can sync up with someone else’s stroke to stay on target. It’s the same machine but so much closer to what it’s like in the boat — I won’t quit because they won’t quit.

But I am not a single sculler for a reason. I rely heavily on the accountability and support of a team. We have playlists and daily Zoom workouts, but my time is no less strained than without a pandemic — my workout needs to be over by 7:30 on normal practice days, cross-training happens during listen-only web calls or after bedtime, and I have to choose between the expected erg piece and the team call. I have only once managed both.

And I can’t do morning sessions on Graham’s practice days, even if he chooses to sleep in instead of erg.

I’m not beating myself up about it too much. We’re all losing some measure of fitness and swing right now. It’s not that I’m afraid of falling behind or not getting my speed back whenever we’re able to race — comebacks are kinda my thing.

It’s that the fitness and swing are what carry me through tough times, and this is ridiculously tough.


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