Friday, May 8 – A Very Quarantine Birthday
By Josette BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA
Well, I did it – I celebrated my birthday in quarantine.
I’m one of those “over-the-top” people when it comes to my birthday. I make sure you know about it far in advance and remind you that I like presents. What can I say – it’s the one day of the year – the whole year – that everything goes my way (or at least it should).
I wasn’t quite sure how I felt about the whole thing this year, to be honest. There was a part of me that was hoping the quarantine would be lifted before my birthday (fat chance) and that I’d be able to celebrate royally, like I do every year, and have it span over at least a week of people celebrating me (I promise I’m not that conceited – it’s just used for emphasis). But, I knew that that wasn’t going to happen, and it was going to be me, here, with my cat (physically).
I was worried I was going to feel negative, depressed, deflated…but, actually, I woke up the day of (not to mention my first day off in a couple of weeks) feeling excited regardless of the situation because that was the best way to be…
“We have to learn to coexist with the coronavirus.”
Messages, calls, emails, video calls…I heard from people all over the world. I felt so honored that despite what we are all going through, people took the time to send me some good wishes and call and write. Someone sent me some presents. Someone sent me a delicious dinner. Someone played a DJ set online dedicated to me – and that definitely felt like a birthday party – in a different way.
I even made a carrot cake…
And on one of my video calls, a couple of my friends had also made cakes, lit candles, and sang to me over Zoom from wherever they were. It was so nice.
It’s not impossible to celebrate like we did before…we just have to do it in a different way – a creative way.
By the end of the day, I was exhausted, and I’d realized that not only was it the first time I’d been really social in 2 months but that it was also the first time I’d actually put on makeup (I still remember).
This post comes with a heartfelt “THANK YOU” to everyone who made this birthday just as special as any other.
So, on to other news. More quarantine. What’s one more month?
We are now well into autumn here, and the weather has gotten colder. They are calling for peak times to occur now – in May and June. Schools will continue giving classes online, and people will continue to work from home. Now, more than ever, we demand reliable internet connections (the internet here has always been an issue). But, we still have to find creative ways to continue to live our lives in a way that is feasible for us.
We have to be healthy – both in mind and in body. Are you working out? Are you sleeping at normal times? Are you dividing up your days? Are you separating your weeks from your weekends?
I feel like this time in quarantine has taught me to be more self-aware. And not just even aware of myself, but aware of others. It is helping me to learn how to let go and has really helped me understand the balance of positivity and negativity. I still maintain what I said in my last post – both positive and negative have a place here, and giving place to both in a balanced way will help you to be healthy and get through this. Putting your energy into being productive, creative, healthy certainly takes up a lot. I find that I don’t have the energy to waste as I did before. It’s helping me to put that energy to where it really needs to go, and it’s helping to shape my attitude into something else.
Someone today told me that’s called “being mature” – I think the jury’s still out on that one (on my part – ha!)
The big keyword here is the following:
ACCEPTANCE – accept what was, is and what will be. Everything has changed.
It’s a hard pill to swallow, for sure. But perhaps the first step on accepting is first realizing that that’s what needs to happen. I don’t know…some food for thought.
Be safe and healthy.