Something I’ve been thinking about a LOT:
What is life going to be like when this is all over?
I can’t quite wrap my mind around it right now. It’s especially hard as there isn’t really any end date (at least for those of us in New York; I know some states are opening back up although that also makes me very nervous). My brain is doing weird things and playing tricks on me. Anyone else put on a TV show, see the characters at a party… and get mad that they aren’t social distancing? What the hell!? I feel like my brain has been rewired and when all of this is over I don’t know how I will react.
I’d like to think things can just go back to normal but I really don’t know? Like how it will feel to walk outside and not wear a face mask, to go to the grocery store, to wait in line at the post office, to hug my friends, to kiss a stranger? To get in a taxi or even ride the subway???
As hard as the past 50 or so days have been, I never forget how good I have it. I haven’t gotten sick, no one close to me is sick, and while I’ve had a few big professional disappointments and my income is definitely less than it usually is, I am okay. Working from home isn’t anything new for me but honestly I’m honestly just incredibly thankful to have healthy friends and family. When things feel terrible, that is my perspective check. I have my health and my livelihood and my family has theirs.
But life has changed so much so quickly.
Will things just change back just as quickly? Can they? Do we want them to? I have a feeling that one of the positive things from all of this is that we are all getting more introspective and thoughtful.
One positive side effect of being stuck inside for so long is that I’ve gotten a lot more organized. My apartment has never been cleaner, my refrigerator is spotless, that pile of receipts that was building up on my desk is taken care of… all of those little things that were stressing me have been more or less taken care of. I’ve spent a lot of time tracking down unpaid invoices and I feel more organized than ever.
My plants are thriving. Tyrion’s toys are all very organized. The dust under my rugs has been Dysoned away. I’m cooking SO much. And I love that. I’ve made things I never thought of myself as particularly domestic or that I could make things like bread and delicious pastas and things that had just felt far too “advanced” in the past. I hope that continues.
I think about dating and relationships.
And I truly cannot imagine what dating is going to look like after this. Sitting in a bar feels strange enough, let alone talking to a stranger. Let alone touching or making out with aforementioned stranger. AM I GOING TO BE A HUGE PRUDE NOW? But the past couple months have been incredibly lonely. I was seeing someone before the pandemic and it did not survive. Will the new barometer for a boyfriend be whether I think he could handle a disaster like this? Whether I’d want to be quarantined together?
Pre-quarantine, I often complained about my social life. In my industry there are so many events that I’d often feel overwhelmed and burnt out by it all. Now, I’m tired of my couch! I’d love a week packed with exciting plans!
On the work front, I think a lot (I thought about this a lot pre-quarantine too!) about how wasteful this industry (fashion, beauty, blogging, digital media as a general whole) can be. Giant packages would regularly show up at my door full of beauty products (and oftentimes, a huge amount of excess packaging). And I know this might sound fun but I promise you it gets old really quickly when your building has strict recycling measures, you don’t actually want all that stuff, and you are a one-person show spending hours a day breaking down boxes and figuring out where to put all that STUFF.
Now, brands reach out and actually ask if I’d like to receive their mailer, knowing that people are sensitive about packages right now. For the first time in years, the mail is not causing me any stress and I’m not spending hours every day breaking down boxes. And I wish it didn’t take a pandemic for that to start.
I think about consumption as a whole:
I’ve always been reasonably responsible but now, looking into my (now beautifully organized) closet at all of those party dresses and even all of my JEANS (bc I’m on a strict soft pants diet right now) I am hit with a wave of emotions. The first is an obvious one: I MISS WEARING THESE THINGS. The second isn’t necessarily regret but more of a… “do I really need all of this?!?” I don’t know. I’m not going to tell you that I’m going to become a minimalist when all of this is over but I have definitely gotten more mindful about my spending and also all of the stuff. Because right now, my home is very clean and orderly and I like it that way.
I think about travel too. When will it feel okay again, getting on a plane and going to a new place? Will I still want to wear a face mask?
There is also the matter of MY HAIR.
Specifically, the amount of time and energy I spent on my hair pre quarantine. For as long as I can remember, my hair’s natural texture has been my worst enemy. Every day is a battle against its thick, dry, frizzy, and somewhat wild tendencies. I’d either spend a fair amount of money on blowouts, OR a ton of time heat styling it. It’s kind of just fine air dried? It’s not great but it’s not the monstrosity I’ve made it out to be? I do very much miss blowouts and smooth sleek hair. But it just feels so frivolous and unnecessary right now.
Honestly the same goes for pretty much all maintenance and beauty treatments. In some ways I’ve gotten more high maintenance (baths and face masks every night?) but I’ve also realized how much I can do on my own. I’m basically turning into an aesthetician over here. 😉 ‘ve realized I can do pretty much everything at home (besides bikini waxes and hair cut/color). It’s a lot less expensive and also less time consuming. I’ll probably keep doing these things on my own now… a lot of stuff just feels like a big waste of money.
Anyway, this was a lot of rambling all to say that I don’t really know what life is going to look like after this. BUT I do think that ultimately, the changes will be positive. I hope that we will emerge from this with our lives feeling fresh, deep cleaned, and orderly… and that once the anxiety of returning to “real life” dissipates, we will come out of this better than before.
I’m curious to hear your thoughts on this, if you feel like sharing!