Written by Allysa Rochelle
IG: @Allysa Rochelle
I logged onto Instagram this morning to a post from Dr. Rose Moten describing what she believes to be the 6 stages of social distancing behaviours we will all be experiencing right now.
Stage 1 — Denial (believing it’s all a hoax, everyone is blowing this out of proportion, it’ll be over in a day or two)
Stage 2 — Bargaining (I’ll just be extra careful, but I’ll carry on with life as normal)
Stage 3 — Anger (This is so unfair, how dare people limit my daily behaviors with social distancing, the government fumbled the bag, this could have totally been avoided)
Stage 4 — Relapse (A temporary brief return to the stages above)
Stage 5 — Depression (Things will never be the same, I miss my friend’s family, etc. What if things never go back to normal?)
Stage 6 — Acceptance (With patience, understanding, and implementation of self-care tools & practices we will get through this challenging time and return to our daily activities)
Like many of you, I have spent the past 7 days in social isolation and as a result, I have had lots of time to come to peace with what is happening, surrender and arrive at a place of acceptance. In the beginning, my brain was doing the absolute most and I had to take some time away from social media, but after implementing the tools I now have in my self-care box, shout out to my therapist. I have some things to share that some of you may find interesting, and they may even offer some key points for thought, as we move through these next few weeks.
SO WHAT DID I LEARN FROM PASSING THROUGH THESE STAGES.
Firstly as with all things, there is always a reason for everything. You’re probably reading this and nodding because you have a conspiracy theory that you’re sure is the reason for alla this! Or you’re a left-brained science type who believes the reason is simple, ‘a virus started and has now spread which means many people will die.’ I realise that people find solace for their reasonings and so I am not here to judge but to simply offer you another thing to consider, hear me out.
The past 10 or so years have been so divisive, we’ve had Trump elected, Brexit, global warming has increased, police brutality has not escalated but as a result of social media and #BlackLivesMatter our white counterparts were finally able to ‘tune in’ to the horrific racism experienced by Black people at the hands of their ancestors’ legacy on a daily basis. And whilst some used this time to reflect on how they could be a better ally to POC, others became incensed into hatred by the idea that they may be seen as bad people.
Even though these occurrences affected all of us around the globe we grieved individually. However, Coronavirus has sent the world her version of an ‘all staff email’ with the very firm message, that we don’t get to continue to disrespect the earth and each other as we’ve been doing up until now. She (mother earth) has managed to get us from pointing the finger at each other, to collectively grieving our losses, of our family, our free time, our independence, our money, and our autonomy to make decisions about where we go and how we temporarily experience our lives, and hopefully, if we’ve listened to her she’s also allowed us to reflect on how we have treated each other and Mother Earth herself.
So if you’ve made it this far in the blog, and my woo woo opinion congratulations! I’m now going to share my personal takeaway from all of this. I believe there is a strong message for the collective as I have described above but I feel that there are also personal takeaways for all of us too.
Like many others, as Dr. Rose Moten described I started out about 3 weeks ago not taking it seriously at all, I was at the denial stage. I carried on as normal and to my defense, the UK hadn’t swung into full panic then, but I was aware. Slowly but surely the government started to give us wishy-washy messages about what we should and shouldn’t be doing, sending the UK into panic mode,
I moved straight to stage 3, anger. Asking myself questions like, ‘why is Boris such a waste man?’ Did he really get on stage to say, ‘I’m afraid your family members will die?!’ WTF are people buying so much toilet paper? Don’t people know that they can wash their asses if they are stuck in their houses with pretty nothing much else to do? Why is everyone sending chain messages on Whatsapp to scare people even more than they already are? But then I reminded myself to breathe and I temporarily came off social media.
I realised I needed to reconnect with myself to get out of the panic, and although I have no physical core strength, my spiritual core is stronger than ever.
I centered myself by breathing, connecting to source and meditating, which is when I felt really calm and was able to have the following thoughts come through. How many people are able to do this in such a crazy time? How many people are slowing down to connect with themselves/and or the higher power if they believe in it? Do people even know that they can do this, do they know that they always have access to themselves and their own mind even at the craziest of times?
After Boris’ ban on public gatherings, today many churches didn’t open, and the Pope even put out a message to all of those who can’t go to confession to reach out to God directly, to some people who didn’t know that they clearly have always had that option.
It dawned on me in this mess, that I only ever have myself. My strengthened intuition, my common sense, and my empathy for others have all prevailed at this time, but let me be clear it has been intentional. Now that society is in a heightened state of panic, I’m finding that remaining calm acts as a salve for you and others around you.
As a direct plea to those who are not taking this seriously and are still acting out of denial and or anger by continuing to live your life as normal, I understand you need your own process, so I’ll just say this. Call this whole Corona thing a conspiracy theory if you like I actually don’t care. However you spin your anger and denial, the fact remains that people are dying, and dying at an alarming rate. We know some things for sure, one of which is we are unaware of all the ways that the virus is spread, and we are still understanding the different ways it shows up in our bodies. Which means that there is a possibility that you carry the virus have no idea and may infect someone who is unable to survive it. The second thing we know for sure is that no country in the world is prepared or has the resources to manage the number of people that will need medical care at this time, which leaves doctors and nurses overwhelmed, tired and exasperated. Many of which will suffer from a great amount of grief which could lead them into depression after this passes from the many lives they were unable to save. So please don’t be a d*ckhead, and stay in your yard.
I don’t know about you, but whether I am aware or not, I never want blood on my hands, energetically or in real life.
As you may move through denial, anger, depression and hopefully eventually arrive at acceptance, I urge you to connect with yourself and find your centre of peace and calm in this crazy, crazy storm. The leaders of this world have proved to us that leading, in fact, is not their strong point, and so we have to learn to lean into our own intuition, the strength of decision making and calm at this time. Don’t let the wahala of society stop you from connecting with yourself, which will inevitably lead us into not being able to connect with each other.
Ok, I have some more woo woo insights, for those who have made it this far, you guys are the real MVP’s!
‘Mother Earth wants to know if we received the message that she has sent? She understands the messenger f’d up the delivery and has sent us all into a panic, but she wants to know if we’ve seen the opportunity to disconnect from our anger and our unmet childhood needs to connect with ourselves and collectively heal with others instead?’
Take what you will from this blog, either way, the whole world is grounded for the foreseeable future anyway. So, I’ll leave it here, for my fellow Caribbean folks out there who are reading, this will resonate, ‘those who cyannn ear’ muss feel.’
P.S. I cannot help but think about all of the people that are on quarantine that live in abusive households. I myself grew up in an abusive house and had this have happened when I was growing up I genuinely don’t know if I would have made it through. If there is anyone you know of, who lives with an abusive partner, parent or otherwise, please check in on them more often, even call social services if you have to, if you have the means, invite them to stay with you through this period, save the children at all costs, always.
Thank you for reading.