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Loves, I know this is a tough time for every single person out there. We are in such a time of uncertainty, and for most of us, it’s incredibly unsettling. We are inundated with information about COVID-19, aka the Coronavirus, and most of it is scary. People are terrified about the possibility of getting it, but they are also going stir crazy at home. I didn’t want to share a blog post this week about clothing and fashion or anything materialistic. No matter how small my platform, I still have one, and I’m going to do whatever I can to encourage my followers and readers.

In this stressful time, it is essential to stay current on the news. I used to be afraid of watching the news due to the depressive stories they would report. I have been reading and watching the news slowly since the outbreak started to spread. COVID-19 is a somber subject and should be taken seriously by EVERYONE. Filter through the things you don’t want to hear and make sure you are listening to facts only. A lot of different platforms will report a lot of crap to scare you and cause panic. Listen to the experts who speak and follow the recommendations of your political officials.

Do not panic! Don’t panic-buy, do not buy 20 packs of water bottles or 40 boxes of toilet paper. We are not going to run out of that. Leave some for other people. Regardless of if we are going to be lockdown or not, grocery stores and pharmacies will still be open. Get what you need, not what you want.

Quarantining doesn’t mean you can’t go outside. You should go out and get some fresh air, walk your dogs, go for a neighborhood walk, go out into your back yards, balcony, or rooftop areas if applicable. Staying inside will give you unprecedented anxieties. The object is to stay away from other people, don’t gather, don’t’ go to high traffic places, don’t go around touching stuff, and just be extra cautious. Local parks are still open and are honestly kind of empty right now. Get outside and get some fresh air, especially while we have the chance to do so. I started working from home on Wednesday, and I have been able to walk my dog daily. Just a short walk around the block and he loves it. If you are a regular gym-goer, work out in your home. Move some furniture around and create a space. I saw someone online using household items as weights. Make it work, guys! I’m going to link some articles that I found incredibly useful.

A moment of clarity and speaking from experience. I started working from home on Wednesday. I can honestly say it is the most annoying experience I’ve ever had. I am used to having two screens and a semi-quiet office. My dog is in my face always, and so is my cat. If Chippy isn’t breathing doggy breath on me, then Milo has the zoomies for at least an hour and a half. I am afraid to go out even giving my dog walks; it’s like I’m always thinking about all the horrible things that can happen. I had to stop and appreciate all the things that God has afforded me in the past few weeks. I am still able to work, while so many others have lost their jobs. People who make their living off of customers or clients are experiencing such a crappy time. How can I complain about not having two screens, when people are losing their jobs left and right? I may have to work from home, but my dog (who I sometimes don’t have the energy to give all of my attention to when I have school and work) gets to not feel so lonely for a while. Chippy gets extra love and deserves that. I am waking up daily to food in my pantry and toilet paper! Some people lost their jobs or are experiencing food scarcity in their local food markets. I have to remind myself of the positives continually. Life isn’t as bad and could be far worst.

Thank your healthcare workers, scientist, grocery store workers, delivery people, farmers, factory workers, and all the people that are making it possible for us to continue living life almost without missing a beat. These people are working tirelessly with no breaks so that we can always have our essentials. They are putting themselves in harm’s way to ensure that the people have what they need. Be insurmountably grateful.

Remember, isolating yourself isn’t just for your health. People can carry this virus for a while before showing any symptoms. And although younger people are surviving this virus, it doesn’t give you the right to go out when you’re sick and possibly infect someone who is older or who has underlying health issues. Isolate yourself so that you’re not spreading anything. Wash your hands frequently, disinfect frequently, and keep the faith. It may take a while, but this too shall pass.

#LetsGetThroughThisTogether

https://www.healthline.com/health-news/taking-care-of-your-mental-health-during-covid19-outbreak#Get-a-grasp-on-anxiety

https://www.who.int/docs/default-source/coronaviruse/mental-health-considerations.pdf?sfvrsn=6d3578af_2

I Feel Like a Woman

Happy International Woman’s Day! Woman’s history month is oh so important and something that every gender should recognize. Women are so important and so underestimated, so extremely underappreciated and undervalued in society. The hardest thing to be in society today is a woman, and what’s even harder is being a woman of color. I spent some time last month (Black History Month) speaking about the importance of being proud of where you come from and appreciating what makes me different. This month I’m going to celebrate what makes me similar to all women.

Women get all types of backlash for so many things. We can’t be too tall, or we’ll intimidate men. We can’t be too chubby, or we’ll never get married. We can’t be too smart, or we’ll scare away the potential husband. We can’t be assertive, or we’ll be considered too emotional. We can’t be too independent because men don’t like that. We can’t be too skinny, or someone will try to offer us food or think we have a disorder. There are so many stipulations to being us, and it can get so overwhelming at times. We are expected to be demure, girly creatures, and if you take a look at the spectrum of women, most of us are far from that. There isn’t anything wrong with that, but don’t shove us into a mold that meets “society” standards. Some of us want to be anything but.

From a very young age, most girls are groomed to be motherly and wife-material. As we get older and we don’t acquire the things that make us “valuable” in society, people frown down. Getting married and having children has been on my mind since I was in my late teens. I wanted to be graduated college, married, and have my first child by 21. I wanted to have my perfect life by 24 and be so happy with the person of my dreams. At 24, I had just graduated from college and had no clear sight of where my life was going. At almost 27, I still don’t! I scroll through my Facebook and I see a lot of high school acquaintances getting married and having children and for a while it made me very sad. Until one day I realized I’m rushing through life being envious of what other people have when it’s just not my time yet. I don’t have children and I’m not married. Still, I’m getting my master’s degree, I have a great job, a beautiful and supportive family, my bills are consistently paid on time, and I have a BOMB blog that gains new followers frequently. I’m valuable. I’m kinda awesome, and whenever God sees it fit, I’ll have the most amazing little family of my own, who will be just as impressive as me!

We, as women, also have to deal with body expectations as well. Plus-sized women are constantly being shamed by the public just for loving our bodies. The bodies that we have! If we aren’t a specific size, we’re considered duds. Honestly, I’ve seen so many videos and comments on pages and heard so many horror stories that I almost didn’t start my blog. As sensitive a person as I am, I knew that I couldn’t handle the possible negative comments. The thought of someone shaming my body just was very scary to me. But, I pushed through my fears and put myself out there so that someone else may see me and feel the same courage that I do on a daily/weekly basis. Ladies, it is okay to love your body OUT LOUD. Love your stretch marks, love your rolls, love your thighs, your arms, your face, and love them PROUDLY. Do not be ashamed of the body that God gave you. If you want to make changes, do it in a healthy way and don’t do it to get a man or please anyone else but yourself. Look at yourself on a daily basis and be proud of the woman you are and the woman you are becoming. Let’s show little girls that it is 100% okay to love your body no matter what!

There is always a sense of fear in women. You hear so many stories in the news about women being attacked because they said no to a man. Even more stories about young women who get abducted, sold into sex-trafficking, sold to men for marriage, and just so much more. It is hard to be a woman. No one understands that but another woman. Every time I get in my car, I check my back seats. Every time I’m home alone, I check my doors before going to my room. I got a doorbell-camera system for safety measures. I see a white van that I’ve never seen in my neighborhood before, and I get a little freaked out. I do not go out alone at night for safety reasons. I am always on high-alert, and unfortunately, I don’t think men have to go through that. We have to stay strong, ladies, and it is okay to defend yourselves with anything that makes you feel comfortable. Be constantly aware of your surroundings, if something or someone doesn’t feel right, get up and leave. Develop a system with your friends, tell them where you are going and check-in. If something is wrong use a codeword to notify them. We shouldn’t have to go through these measures, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.

I do not hate being a woman. In fact, I love it. We are all so different and beautiful, it is incredible to see. All women, from all walks of life, should be appreciated and celebrated. Women encouraging women is the most fantastic feeling, and I would like to thank every woman that has ever breathed life into me; my mother, especially. That is one strong lady, and I am beyond proud to be her daughter.

#LetsGetThroughThisTogether