Wow, that impulse trip to Scotland seems like it happened a lot longer than a week ago! I came home on Thursday, school closures were announced Friday. We left that night for Ötz, Austria, thinking we’d spend 5 weeks hiking and renovating the house, but on Saturday Tirol was announced as a high-risk area and all non-residents got the boot. German borders were closed on Sunday; we drove through at 4:30 on Sunday morning to avoid any awkward questions about citizenship vs. residency. Whew.
Literally two weeks ago I was drinking beers with 50,000 rugby fans, in Edinburgh for the Six Nations Scotland-France game, enjoying the kilts and the camaraderie. The changes have been dizzying since then: my friends in the hard-hit Lombardia area of Northern Italy have gone from funny stories about being bored, locked up for days on end with their kids in their apartments, to fear for their collective future and anguish about losing a generation. The pain they express about having loved ones die alone is difficult to see, and when that’s layered over our worry about the transmission of the virus in Germany and Max’s frailty it starts to seem like it’s…
Time to Break Out Those Coping Mechanisms!
You know what’s great about having a bunch of traumatic ER visits behind you? Knowing how much yoga you’re going to need to do to avoid losing your shit, how much kale to put in the recovery smoothie, how early you’re going to need to go to bed to accommodate for teeth grinding wakefulness, and the difference between discussions held in the clarity of the morning versus the exhaustion of the night. Tobias and I have, thanks to Max’s genetic condition and heart episodes, had so many rounds of catastrophe–>stress–>stress management that the COVID-19 fallout has just kicked us into our usual incident recovery mode: long solo exercise sessions, lots of healthy veggies and grains, less booze, more sleep, try to make time together in the morning and give each other space in the evening.
It’s not so much that we’re curating the perfect catastrophe lifestyle, but rather knowing that if we let ourselves get sick, or divorced, our ability to respond to a crisis is compromised and we have no fucking backup plan so that just can’t happen.
Easy peasy, right? Let me know if Gwyneth needs some content for GOOP’s April Desperation issue.