Essential

Essential

So. How about that pandemic, huh?

I hope you all are staying healthy. I’m certainly trying. Both my roommates are working from home, which is good, even if they’re starting to go a little stir-crazy…

Our newest roommates haven’t figured out social distancing yet.

As for me, I’ve been deemed an essential worker. Which means my day-to-day has changed very little, because I’m still going out in public every day. This is… not the worst thing that could happen, obviously, but I have my reservations.

Pros: I still have a job! And, therefore, a paycheck!
Cons: I have to interact with the public every day, and not everyone is taking the pandemic seriously.

I work in a retail front for a shipping company, which means there are people coming in to do essential things–mostly, sending medicine and snacks to people in quarantine, or mailing unemployment applications. Some people, on the other hand, well…

I’ll try not to get too angry about it here, but let it be said I’m not happy risking my health–or life–or anyone else’s, on merchandise returns.

Anyway. It does make you wonder what in your life really is essential. There’s the basics of survival, of course: food, water, shelter. There’s social interaction, though everyone’s level on that is different (personally, I wish I had much less right now!). And there’s entertainment.

I’m flat out astonished at how many people, now that they’re stuck at home, are discovering they have no hobbies.

I can’t imagine being able to stay home and having no way to fill the time. I have games. I have books. I have a computer with a keyboard. I have a drawing tablet. I have… beads and wire and resin, and fabric and a sewing machine, and paints and markers. Hell, I have popsicle sticks and a hot glue gun. If I weren’t writing–which I nearly always am–I have so many other things I can do. I can create.

So, if you’re quarantined or under a lock down or just trying to keep your distance–sure, you can watch The West Wing again, or keep scrolling through Facebook, or stare at a wall for a couple hours. But, maybe, you could try something creative. It could be an afternoon task–bake a cake! Solve a jigsaw puzzle! Sew yourself a mask! Or it could be something that could take you weeks or even months–knit a sweater! Write a book!

And when you’re done, you’ll have made something. And that, to me, is more fulfilling–more essential to my happiness–than anything else.

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