This may not sit well with some, however it is not my intention to offend anyone.

Truth is, I am a very active person. I am constantly powered to go, go, go, and never have been very good at sitting still for long. I don’t suffer from ADHD; I suffer from impatience and an overabundance of energy. I can’t imagine living a single day of my life without constantly multitasking. Please don’t email me with ways to decompress. I like this pace. It’s how I roll. Besides, I do practice yoga ... love the poses and the stretching, just not much on the meditation part.

So all that being said, this virus business has me stressed, just like everyone else. Still, I am not as concerned about catching the virus as I am being told I might have to shelter in place. As of this writing, our governor is saying she will not order this, and let’s hope things stay that way because if I have to stay in 24/7 you might as well call the psych wing of the nearest hospital and reserve my room.

I am well aware of this new term we’ve all come to live with — “social distancing.” When I was 11 or 12 “social distancing” was all about ballroom dance lessons at Wally Coyle’s Studio of the Dance when the boys stood terrified across one side of the room, the girls were in a line on the other, and we all shuddered to think we were going to have to dance together and probably get “cooties.” Yup, cooties. That’s what prepubescent boys and girls thought the opposite sex would give them, if they so much as touched. Of course, that all changed a year later due to the inevitable march of the hormones. Then they told us “touching” was bad. But prior to that, having to hold hands with the opposite sex was a disgusting thought.

So now we find ourselves with rules that change daily, sometimes by the hour. My favorite spot for coffee went from having a nice, clean, do-it-yourself counter, to not allowing you to bring in your own container, to they’ll pour the coffee for you and put in your sugar and/or milk. Last week, the posted sign said “coffee is now only available 7AM-2PM.” I figure by the time this hits the paper, we’ll be emailing Juan Valdez to send the damn beans direct!

Yes, I know, we’re all in this together, and we all have to sacrifice so we can get back to life as we knew it, but right now it’s not the virus that’s as depressing as the negativity. Every day we are told, “No, you can’t do this anymore,” or “Now closed till further notice,” or “All events are canceled until June at the earliest.”

People’s conversations with one another online or on the phone are depressing, dwelling only on the worst. My hairdresser tells me she has a friend, Linda, who “lives on Facebook,” broadcasting to all her friends everything she sees or reads, whether or not it may be accurate. So several times a day, Linda sends cheery little updates of the latest death toll in such and such a state. We don’t need to hear that, read that, or pass that on! It’s all available on the radio, on TV, or in the newspaper. What we need to hear is a bit of good news, perhaps something to make us smile or even, God forbid, laugh. Remember laughing? It wasn’t all that long ago.

The Hallmark Channel has taken to running favorite holiday movies, because as the song says, “We need a little Christmas right now.” I’m not so sure I’m ready to haul out the holly what with buds on the trees in the yard, but I am ready to hear some good stuff. So here’s your assignment, faithful readers: send me something positive in your life right now ... perhaps a funny story, a child’s comment, what your dog did, something — anything! Each week, until this is over, I’ll print some of the best ones, so feeling good, being grateful for what we have, and being positive about the future can become the thing that’s infectious.

If you don’t do this for me, then just call Butler where I’ll be reading and watching TV while doing yoga, all at the same time. Send me a card, if you’re still allowed to lick stamps.

Rona Mann has been a freelance writer for The Sun for 18 years, including her “In Their Shoes” features. She can be reached at six07co@att.net or 401-539-7762.

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