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Adulting in the Time of COVID-19

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Highlights from the episode:

– Why my March 16 episode didn’t drop
– What’s going on with me
– What’s been helping/not helping during COVID-19

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This is the Adulting with ADHD podcast, self-empowerment for women with ADHD.

Hi everybody. If you noticed the March 16th episode did not drop, and I’m sorry for that. I had a fun episode teed up, it was with a business in the meal prep industry and we decided to postpone it for next month. It didn’t feel appropriate at the time, and also I did not want to overload the capabilities of this company, and so we’ll look forward to that, probably next month. It’ll be a real fun and useful episode, and in the meantime I thought it would be good to do a check in with everybody, because things are kind of scary right now, and especially for folks like us with ADHD and commonly anxiety and depression, you know, stuff like this, for me it’s been interesting. Some of this is like really native territory for me, and so I feel fully prepared, but then there’s other parts, like uncertainty, that can just be really unraveling right now.

And so I just thought that we would just talk about that for this episode. First, what’s been going on with me? I had been hearing about the COVID-19 pandemic and just kind of trying to strike a balance between being prepared and also not overreacting. I had a conference I was going to speak at that was canceled, and I think that was the first time I realized that hey, this is pretty serious. And that’s when I started needing to be very mindful of how my inner dialogue was working, and making sure that I kept it together, and not just for me, but I have a three year old who sees a lot and hears a lot, even when I think I am being careful. So a lot of it has it been just being strong for her, being strong and just moving forward.

And so to compound all this, we’ve had really bad oak pollen in my city. I’m in a part of the country that’s notoriously horrible with allergies. And so I’m in week three of just horrible oak pollen allergies. And it’s been making everything a lot more confusing, because as you know, one of the markers of COVID-19 is respiratory issues. But luckily for me, I have not had any fever or any other indicators. And so I’m going with fingers crossed I’m okay for now. I am sheltering in place, what have you. And anyway, we have in-laws in town who are older. And I was just, it seemed like a good thing to do anyway, and now I’m really glad, so that no matter what this is, I’ve been keeping it at home.

So yeah, after I dropped that episode, I’ve just been trying to get over these allergies. I’ve had two urgent care visits, and it’s ridiculous because it’s pollen, and I feel silly telling anyone about it because we’re dealing with something so much bigger right now. And it also makes it hard to even think about a podcast because my voice has just been shot to hell. And luckily I was able to rally for this recording, but I’m sure after this recording is over, I’m going to not have a voice for the rest of the night, which is totally fine, totally worth it.

Well, that’s where I’m at right now and I’ve been doing a lot of deep thought about where to take Adulting with ADHD, and this really is one of those life experiences where you chip away everything that does not matter and you want to work on what does matter. And for me, this is what matters to me, and I’m trying to figure out how I can best honor that moving forward. And so we’re all having moments of forced introspection right now and that’s where I’m at with my introspection. I have a job, I’m a freelance marketer, that pays the bills, and then I have Adulting with ADHD, which I would love to do more than anything for a living. And so just going to kind of dig deep and see how I can make that happen.

So I thought before I closed this episode, I would go through a few things that have been helping and not helping during the self sheltering and the COVID-19 pandemic. The first thing is regarding schedules and routines. When this all started, it was helpful sticking to routine, especially for my toddler, and even though we had pulled her out of school before the school shut down, the same day, or the next day, I’ve been really trying to make sure the the bedtimes and the bath times and the meal times are all set. Not set in stone, but just you know, set in some sort of structure.

And that was helping a lot for all of us, not just our three year old. But there’s a flip side of that, and I think I have diverged from that routine, and I’m in a place now where I’m just doing what I need to do to get things done. And that has resulted in my schedule being completely flipped, where I’m up all night working and whatnot. And then, while my family sleeps, and it’s not something I do. It’s something I used to only do once in a while, but for some reason, some it’s anxiety, some of it is my sleep pattern because I’ve been under so much medicine that my sleep is all out of whack. But for whatever reason I’m on a completely different sleep schedule now than my family. And so there’s a flip side, you need to give yourself some grace, because what you’re going through right now is not usual. And so while it’s great to have routines, and it’s great to have rituals, if you aren’t honoring those right now, don’t beat yourself up about it either, because this isn’t business as usual right now, and it’s okay if you’re not either.

The second thing was with food and supplies. I’ve struck a pretty good balance between preparation versus just hoarding, and being one of the toilet paper people. I’m not one of the toilet paper people, but I’ve been mindful that I grab a few extra things when I’m out, and I’m very mindful of what we have in the house, and what we don’t have. I’m really glad I did that because now one of the medicines I’m on for my respiratory issues, actually is compromising my immunity, which is horrible timing right now to have a weakened immunity. And I’m glad I made sure everything was more or less stocked up.

But there’s a flip side. I think I had a day or two where I was little too obsessed with my list, and it was like I had this idea that there were certain things that I had to have, and if I couldn’t have them, things weren’t going to be okay. And I think that was just my primal brain trying to get control of the situation, kind of when you go back to school and you have school lists and it’s like, “Well if I just, I don’t get everything on this list and do this perfectly, we’ll have a great school year.” And I mean that as a student and as a parent of a student, I’ve done both. And so I think it was that kind of thing like, “Well, I’m preparing for quarantine, I have to do everything perfectly.” And at the end of the day, as a friend said, “There is no manual on this. We’re all just figuring it out.” And I think we’ve done a good job, all of us just figuring out as we go. Unless you’re one of those people who are still out partying, please don’t do that. Please stay home.

And then number three is checking in with friends and family. Very helpful for the most part. You know, it’s nice to keep those connections, and it makes you feel less isolated, and it’s calming to know those people are okay, and it’s nice to kind of have people to use as sound boards. And I’ve been asked to a couple of virtual coffees, which I haven’t really had a voice to do yet, but this episode’s been going okay so far. So maybe I have a voice now where I can start virtually meeting people for coffee. I think I’ve been missing some sort of social interaction with my friends, for as antisocial as I am, I do miss, I do have like a core group of people, and I really miss talking to them. So it’ll be helpful I think to have virtual coffee with those people.

And on the flip side, not helpful, spoiler alert, social media and the news, which you probably already knew was on here. I’m struggling with this one because I want to stay informed and I don’t know how to do that without falling into the rabbit hole. And I almost feel like back in the old days when I used to be obsessed with my weight, I would step on the scale, and I feel like whatever the scale set just pretty much dictated my mood for the day. And that’s kind of how I feel like the news and the social media are, I could have a good or a bad mood just based on whatever my phone is serving at me, in a given moment, and that that can’t be healthy.

So I’m still trying to navigate that because I do want to be informed for a lot of reasons, and this is something I’ve struggled with over the past few years, of just how do I maintain responsible knowledge of the world around me without getting sucked into negative things, and making sure I’m being properly informed and not panicking. All those things are coming back tenfold right now. That’s actually something I invite you to write in about on social media or email me, and if you have any tips on how you stay informed without being sucked in to all that, I would love to hear about it. And then my social medias are ADHD Adulting. That’s my handle on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and so yeah, just when I post this episode, hit me up in the comment section. Let me know not just how you’re handling social media and the news, but how you’re handling the COVID-19 pandemic in general, and what’s working for you, what’s not working for you. I would love to know.

And on my part moving forward, I’m going to be thinking a lot about where to take this podcast from here. It’s not business as usual and I don’t want to run it like it is. I did have a editorial calendar figured out, and I had a couple of guests lined up, and I need to think through everything I’m doing, because I want to make sure I am where I need to be because this isn’t business as usual, like I said, and it didn’t feel right going on another hiatus. I’ve been on so many of those. I’m ready to go. I want to keep going with the podcast. I just, I want to make sure I do it correctly, and that’s about it. And so definitely stay in touch. Definitely reach out on the socials, and email me. And until next time, happy adulting.

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