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Creatures of Habit, Revisited

Every day feels like a new reality. And this is just the wind-up. I had a particularly discouraging start to my morning. I’ve been turning to The Daily podcast from the NYT more and more as this pandemic unfolds but this edition was too much of a reality check.

Why the American Approach Is Failing
“Shelter in place” orders and the closing of businesses are a reaction to the failure to act earlier to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

So far, the United States has been losing the battle against the pandemic, with a patchwork of inconsistent measures across the country proving unequal to halting the spread of the virus. Today, we ask: What will it take to change the course of the crisis?

Honestly, I was shaken and haven’t recovered since listening to it. But only so much is in my control. I feel powerless but am trying to focus on what I can actually manage. We have been social distancing at home for a week and a half already. I ordered two new digital thermometers off ebay at a markup, I’m sure, because other sites are all sold out (we seem to have lost ours in the last move). I am still employed, for now, and have a job to perform. And, as a parent, I am trying to prepare my son as much as possible without scaring the crap out of him. We are both homebodies who thrive with a certain amount of structure and routine (the last time I used this post title was under far more adorable circumstances). We’re still trying to blend old routines with new ones, just like everyone else. I’ve been continuing with my lunch walks, but they aren’t nearly as relaxing, now that I have to veer off sidewalks and paths to avoid less conscientious pedestrians in my neighborhood. And my son is too terrified to go on walks at all. He is sticking to his same sleep schedule and mealtimes mostly, but has opted to forego lunch, in order to make our food stores stretch more. I’ve ensured him this is not necessary but he has seen his Dad adhere to this calorie restriction technique and decided to give it a try. It saddens me. But I have no doubt that life is going to be very different on the other side of this, for those who survive. Now it’s only a matter of time before we are completely engulfed by this pandemic.

A bit of blue sky and tree branches

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