Maintaining Your Self-Care During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Self-care has already been a priority in my life. Sometimes I probably cater to my self-care more than I should, but if I didn’t, I would go crazy. After being quarantined for the last 14 days and who knows how many in the future, my self-care is now even a higher priority. Here are ways that I have been implementing self-care in my own life that have helped me. I hope that they can help you too…

Create a photo book. I love creating photo books. I create one for every year for my family, and then when the sale hits for “unlimited free pages” I purchase the book. My three kids have their own bin in their closets that holds a photo book for each year of their life. I even make them for each family vacation, and our #geddesadventures every summer. I am currently working on a Covid-19 photobook so in 20 years from now, myself and my kids can reflect on Spring 2020.

Cook. In a normal spring season, my family is never home for dinner. With two of my kids in baseball, and one in select soccer, dinner is usually a drive-thru. If it is a baseball night, our dinner consists of concession stand food. Now, I have time to cook which I usually don’t get to enjoy. I have made dishes I have always wanted to cook, and I have been using my grill like crazy. So, take out an old cookbook, and make a dinner you have always wanted because now you have the time.

Read. I am a bookworm, and in my second life, I could have been a librarian or media specialist. Reading for me lets me “escape”, which right now, who doesn’t? Don’t know what to read? Join Goodreads. You will have more friends on there than you realize. Since libraries are closed, use the app Libby. The app allows you to check out audio and eBooks. It even has children’s books. My kindergartener has been enjoying listening to Percy Watson through audio; it gives him another voice besides his Mommy’s.

Yoga. I have always liked yoga, but I never made time for it, and flexibility has never been my strong suit. Now, I am making myself do yoga 3 times a week. Yoga by Adriene is my favorite and her videos are free on YouTube.

Clean. I hate to clean. I would say I despise cleaning. But I do love cleaning where I can see a HUGE difference. Pick one room a day, and CLEAN it. Do the baseboards, clean the windows. It will give you a huge sense of accomplishment.

Purge. This goes hand in hand with cleaning. If you haven’t used it in the past year, GET RID OF IT. This will make you feel lighter and again a sense of accomplishment.

Exercise. I am an addicted CrossFit person, and it is killing me that I can’t go to the gym. Luckily, our gym owner is using Zoom so our 859 family can work out together. If you don’t have a gym, there are so many at home workouts that you can do. You can find workouts on Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, etc.

Go on an adventure. In our family we call these Geddes Adventures. We like to hike, and some places are still open-just call before you go. We went on a trail close to our house two days ago and we found a snake, 3 snapping turtles, 2 cardinals, 1 woodpecker, and a frog. My kids thought that it was so cool to find all those creatures on a hike. If you go hiking, give your kids something to look for—it keeps them entertained and makes them forget that their legs are tired.

Bake. My kids love making cookie cutter cookies, and my daughter likes to make cakes. On the next rainy spring day during the quarantine, have a cookie decorating contest in your house. It will make the afternoon fly by.

Binge-watch shows. I have never watched so much TV in my life. With my usual crazy schedule, I never sit down until it is bedtime. I am not going to lie; it feels nice to lay on the couch and watch a show. Yes, we have jumped on the Tiger King wagon in our house, but I have also been able to catch up on shows that I am 3 seasons behind on.

That’s my list. I hope that my list finds yourself and your family healthy during this crazy pandemic. I often wonder if this is a sign, that we all need to slow down our fast-paced life, work on our self-care, and enjoy time with family.

Mary Jo Geddes, 2019 Kentucky Health TOY, High School Health and PE Teacher, Lexington, KY, maryjo.geddes@fayette.kyschools.us, @tcmrsgeddes

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