My Quarantine Thoughts and COVID Theories

God I hate snow. God.

Remember people, human life CAN exist without money.

I was going to go get a haircut on Super Tuesday when Supercuts had a sale…but I got distracted.  Don’t put off what you can do today because tomorrow may never come.

How come no one is just telling Trump “No dude, it’s over.”  Why are we not stopping this? There are people that could stop this.  He isn’t going to understand that he is not the master of America, and he isn’t gonna magically get smarter. He can’t comprehend the constitution.  Just forcefully carry him out of office and put him in a nursing home.  Tell him he is the president of the TV room. He probably won’t even know the difference.

Our president is a delusional bully. He is not mentally fit to be president.  Especially now.

The EPA rollback shit and the selling of government land is really pissing me off.  Trump used his declaration of emergency power to overturn some important regulations and is doing some pretty shady shit when it comes to the environment and public land.  The Earth is healing right now, let’s keep that ball rolling.

Now would be a perfect time to transition our national electric grid and automotive industry to greener options. Wind, solar, hydro, ect.

We could also use hemp to make paper, plastic, ect, and end some of some of that deforestation.

All you oil fucks are already filthy rich and living way higher qualities of life than most people.  Just let us battle climate change, now is the time. There will always be a need for some oil, your children will still inherent millions, quit being greedy dicks and sacrificing the planet.

NASA plans to go to the moon in 2024. I hope the crisis won’t slow their plan down too much.

COVID-19 doesn’t have a super high mortality rate.  It’s danger lies in that it is highly contagious, many people are asymptomatic and it incubates for around 2 weeks.

Everybody dies someday. We need to quit living in fear, and we don’t have to panic.

Just follow the science based orders and do what you can to minimize the risks to yourself and others.

Please don’t inject disinfectant, that is not science based. Trump in general is not science based.

I don’t like the term social distancing, it feels very isolating. Can we please call it physical distancing?

Fear can make you addicted to bad news and makes you search out only the information that affirms the anxiety based beliefs you already hold, and disregard anything that negates it.

Scientific evidence outweighs opinion 100 percent of the time.

This is a new virus and the scientific community is still in the process of collecting data and testing theories. Many things being presented as facts are just theories and opinions.

Many people need to learn how to tell the difference between an opinion (personal belief,) a theory (educated guess based on current evidence,) and a fact (scientifically proven.)

The First Covid-19 death in the US has recently been updated to February 6th in California. They did not travel abroad and would have been infected mid to late January through community contraction.

MY THEORY-  Is that as we do more postmortem testing of suspected deaths we are likely to find it was in the US earlier than previously thought. Also, that it made the jump from bat to human earlier than previously reported.  As we do more antibody testing we are likely to find that more people have already had the virus and it has a lower mortality rate than it currently appears.

Details of the virus’s emergence are still being traced.  Certain genetic mutations needed to happen for it to be so stealth against our immune systems, and I am interested to see if some people contracted the virus previous to these mutations, allowing it to evolve undetected in the earlier stages of human infection.

Tracking the genetic mutations of the virus is like watching Darwinism on a very small scale.

F1.large

Here is the scientific source and explanation of this graph.  This is a timeline of the genetic mutations of the virus made from genetically sequencing samples of the virus.  Cluster A is genetically closest to the control bat virus.  Cluster B is where the pandemic was gaining momentum in China.

I love how the scientific community is coming together like never before to fight this virus.  The amount of data sharing and international teamwork is incredible.

I kinda wish I would have been a scientist and not a drummer right now lol.  I’d still have a job, and more excitement.

I wish before this happened…that I had gotten new shoes.  I was about to go shoe shopping. My shoes are very worn out now. My feet are aching. Personal problems. From now on I will have 2 pairs of shoes.

I wish I would have had Elvis’ nails trimmed right before quarantine, or I had taken a full training course on how to trim a difficult dog’s nails.

So, I do personally disagree with one aspect of the quarantine, and that is the lack of access to nature and trails. I admit this is mostly a selfish opinion because I hike and run trails for my own mental and physical health.  Not being able to run while breathing in the fresh air is hard on me and making my depression worse.  Plus staying away from people in nature is a secret skill of mine…I was a stoner in Sioux City Iowa.

Seriously though, I really do,  think access to nature is important for human health and our immune systems.  You can still go outside while quarantined

Even so, of course I am not one of those whiny assholes protesting!!! Shut up and take one for the team! If you hate your hair so much, just quit looking in the mirror.

Understand that during this crisis we are at a point in history where we need to make personal sacrifices and put the greater good above individual freedoms. This is bigger than our temporary inconveniences.

I am looking at the positives of this worldwide pause.  The Earth is healing.  The science geek in me can not wait to see all the graphs showing how this moment in time is affecting smog, global temperature, water quality, ect.  This is what the planet needed. It is a collective deep breath for the planet and everyone on it. Just a moment to rest and reset.

The future is unwritten and filled with potential.  We need to figure out a system that works  better for everyone, including the earth/climate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now is the Time for Compassion, Not Judgement

Now is the time for compassion, not judgement.

Trigger warning- depression…

The world has changed with COVID-19. Individual lives have been affected and the world as a whole. With the severe changes and the extreme methods used to combat the virus, another legitimate health threat is looming for many of us. Depression.

It always feels like you are the only one, and the isolation makes it worse. I know that if I am battling it right now many others are suffering too, some very silently.

Please remember depression is a sickness that, like the virus, can result in death. They say up to 200,000 Americans may die of COVID-19. In 2018, there were 48,300 suicide deaths. As it is now for every 4 people who die from Corona 1 person will die of suicide this year. That number is sure to rise as a result of the current circumstances too.

Depression is hard to acknowledge and talk about. Everyone wants to stay positive in this, and believe me I do too. Some people are good at reaching out for help but many hide it, afraid to annoy people with their unpleasant feelings.

There are also things very well meaning people say, unaware that it does more harm than good. These things can be damaging. People with depression, trauma, and anxiety already have hyper-vigilant nervous systems and even small remarks said in the wrong way can seem detrimental.

The first is trying to push positivity upon depression. “Hey, just cheer up.” “It will all be ok.” “You are worrying over nothing. ” “You just need to have a positive attitude.” “Let’s all smile.”

You can not just tell a person to be happy, especially with depression or grief. It makes the person feel isolated in their feelings and wrong to have them. There is a lot of guilt of emotions with depression. “If everyone else can just cheer themselves up why can’t I?”

We need to acknowledge the fact that there are many people battling harsh emotions now. We can not deny that the country is also dealing with a mental health crisis. It is unhealthy and detrimental to not confront this publicly.

It is OK to be sad or depressed. It is OK to need to talk about it. It is OK to express these feelings. Don’t expect people to be able to just put on a happy face during this time.

The next thing please do not compare a person with depression’s situation to others. Like pointing out that other people have it worse. It is minimizing the person and they perceive it as their feelings are invalid, or they are selfish just for having them.

I am seeing a lot of this with the current situation. “Lot’s of people lost their jobs, not just you.” “We are all stuck inside.” “Many people have it worse.”

This can isolate depression and grief and cause guilt for expressing their feelings.

Another really big one, that has been prevalent in the recent situation, is people trying to force gratitude on others. One step further, I am seeing people judging others for a perceived lack of gratitude.

Don’t tell someone else they are wrong because you don’t think they are grateful enough. Do the people who are doing this even realize how rude it is, or how much damage their remarks can do to someone with depression?

“Well at least you have a home.” “You have food and wi-fi so you have no reason to complain.” “Why are you sad you should be grateful of what you do have.” “Your house is comfortable you are selfish for not being grateful.” “How can you complain about losing your job when you have shelter and food, what is wrong with you?’

A person with depression can feel they have no right to any negative emotions, that their pain is not legitimate. These remarks make them feel like their reason for feeling down, sad, shocked, anxious isn’t “bad” enough, so there must be something wrong with them if they have those feelings. It is emphasizing to a person already feeling like a burden that they really are damaged.

Depression is not a lack of gratitude, and gratitude is not the cure for depression. It is actually one of the many coping skills I personally combine to navigate my depression. I do have many things to be grateful for, and I am, but the depression is still there. It helps, but is not as simple as that.

You can be grateful of what you have and still be sad or in pain. Those are natural human emotions.

It still hurts to lose your job. It is a shock to your system when most of your ways of coping and treatment disappear almost overnight.

My personal coping with depression involves medicine and therapy.

It also involves sticking to a sleep schedule and getting at least 7 hours a night. It involves keeping my life as low stress as possible and having the security of a job for the income and purpose to get out of bed. It involves meditation and yoga routines, jogging, hiking and getting time in nature. Expressing my emotions by playing music, and the important connection of playing with others. Playing the drums is my zen zone and vital to my well-being. It actually takes a lot of time, effort, money and sacrifice for me to live healthily with depression.

Please remember depression is a legitimate illness. It is not a lack of positive thinking and it is not a lack of gratitude. It is medical condition and is treated with a mix of different coping skills, medicines, therapy, ect.

It also isn’t just “being sad.” Often it is a lack of emotions, apathy about living, constant numbness. It has physical symptoms too, like your limbs feel like weights you can hardly lift, and getting out of bed can seem impossible. Standing in the shower hurts. It can take so much effort to do the smallest tasks. Living itself is simply painful.

When I am in moderate depression I will gain a couple pounds and get lazy, over eat sugar, sleep too much and cry.

However, when I am in severe depression I lose weight because I loose my appetite, I can’t eat or sleep well, and I also loose any interest in life and the things I normally enjoy. I can’t cry, I feel detached.

After I lost my job I was staying so mentally positive, looking on the bright side, being mindful and staying grateful.  I was counting my blessings and reminding myself that I will be ok.

I also noticed I wasn’t sleeping, I was not eating much, and I was losing weight fast. I disassociated from the emotions of losing my job, hiking, and live music, the sudden financial stress, and I focused on the positive, but still my body was in depression.

About a week later the pain welled up to the point I couldn’t repress it anymore and BAM!!! I cried for 2 like days, and that was OK people, because it does hurt to loose your job, your ability to play music with people, hugs, and all the associated stress of this situation. It is OK to have negative feelings at times like these. It is OK to cry and express pain. It is OK to have conversations that are not all positive and bright.

Those tough conversations are needed right now for many people.  People need to express their pain right now, not hide it for fear of being judged for it.

I am strong and my awareness of my illness, my medication, and my daily routines help me so much. But other people suffering right now may not have these support systems. Some people suffering right now may not even be aware what they are feeling is depression. Also, many people are also dealing with grief at this point in time.

So, to anyone who is judging sad and grieving people, depressed people, or people voicing their hardships at the current situation for not being grateful enough, that isn’t what is needed right now.

Instead of telling people what they should be grateful for, trying telling them why you are grateful for them. That is something many people need to hear right now. Let people know why they are important to this world.

Reach out to a friend and really ask how they are doing if you think they are having trouble. Reach out to friends you may never even think are having trouble too. Many of us are great at hiding our depression, we have been doing it for years.

Please listen to each other and be compassionate and understanding at this time.