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  • Writer's pictureLouise Carnachan

Don't Mess with My Plans


We sure resent being told we can’t do something. My 96-year-old mother (who’s never willingly gone outside, as far as I know), told me she’s mad she can’t leave the building; COVID-19 has them in lockdown at her assisted living facility. Nice to know we never lose that inner tiger!

I’ve been observing my own reactions to changes requiring my compliance. It’s akin to the grief process; first step, denial. With each cancellation of something I care about, I notice my white-knuckle grip on the steering wheel of life as I yell, “No!” Finally, when my emotions settle down and I get used to the idea, I surrender to the current reality. Then the next thing comes up. Wash, rinse and repeat.

I don’t know that most of us are mentally equipped to process the magnitude of this pandemic or its duration. Public health officials understand the implications, but the rest of us are getting it at the rate we can. I was on the phone with a friend who was anxious about being behind the curve on a big project roll-out scheduled to go-live in October. It hadn’t yet occurred to her yet that it quite possibly won’t happen on time.

No doubt you, or people you know, are dealing with decisions to cancel trips (or have had them cancelled), are figuring out how/if weddings, graduations, anniversaries, or other major milestones will take place. Many have already taken place via video platform. We're all faced with a reprioritization of our lives. The one priority that continues to be important to everyone is relationships. And that’s a very good thing.

What was important to you that you had delay or cancel? How did you handle it?

Sending you appropriately physically distanced encouragement—and reminding you to get outside but not near others.

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4 Comments


sharinjoy2003
sharinjoy2003
Apr 06, 2020

My emotions at times operate as a roller coaster, up and down, angered, depressed, grieving, feeling sorry for us all and then guilty that I'm not doing more. I notice my emotions are often more reactive than I might want and then I take the time to go easy on myself, knowing everybody is up and down during this time. I give my emotions as much space as they need fully knowing that this too will pass.

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Lisa Nowak
Lisa Nowak
Apr 05, 2020

I'm fortunate that my job is considered essential (at least by Oregon's loose standards), and I don't really have a life other than that, so there's not that much I'm missing out on. ;) I feel bad for the kids who are missing once-in-a-lifetime experiences, like state sport championships, prom, and graduation.

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anne
Apr 05, 2020

As were were scrambling to get my daughter home from her university, she called to apologize in advance for the fact that she wouldn't be able to get to her laundry before her trip and would be arriving with a suitcase of dirty clothes. Sometimes, even letting go of the small things feels like a big deal! We've had major trips, schools, and events cancelled, with no hard end in sight, but I do find comfort in knowing that the whole world is dealing with the same situation and that there are some higher-up mandates in place which mean that I don't personally have to decide whether to cancel my individual events.

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Barb Froman
Barb Froman
Apr 05, 2020

Like the rest of the world, I've delayed a trips, meetings, birthday parties, and eating out. And, you're right, when I get through my 15-30 minutes of whinging about it, I begrudgingly discover that there are some benefits to not doing these activities.

As a matter of fact, I've now decided to dump some of these got-to-do tasks because they'd become obligatory.

So here's to reprioritizing, whether it was my idea or not.

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