16 Apr 2020

The “At-Home” Diaries: A New Comfort Zone

The "At Home Diaries" on vickiarcher.com


Are our comfort zones changing?
With our new way of living there comes a shift; a shift in what we feel comfortable with.

Will our comfort zones adjust on a permanent basis? Have they altered already?

I don’t have the answers but I do know our behaviours are modifying to meet our circumstances and how this will play out long term is uncertain.


A “touchy feely” person is my nature. I am inclined to shake hands, kiss hello and offer a hug – it is how I like it and how I grew up. My father and my brother always embraced and my parents were lavish in their affections. I have been the same with my family and friends forever; it feels unnatural to behave differently. Of course for the safety of others, I am observing the social distancing rules and sticking to my household, as hard as it is. When I feel wobbly I imagine how much worse it could be and I am grateful to live as I am living.


Our comfort zones are very defining.

I haven’t thought about them in the past, as what came naturally, was not only comfortable but also the norm. My comfort zone has never been to avoid others, cross the street if we are too close in proximity or wash my hands, like Lady Macbeth, if I have been touching the forbidden. My hands fly about like windscreen wipers; it’s how I express myself. None of that works right now.


What about socialising, dating, travelling and all the other comfort zones we take for granted? Will they change? Will we care less about what we don’t have and keep our focus firmly on what is safe and in front of us? How we have taken for granted this global life and the riches it has offered. I sincerely hope my thoughts and emotions will stay in the correct lane when we come out of this.


I want it to end as soon as possible, the news is nothing but heart-breaking and I want our health professionals and carers to have a break and breathe. What amazing warriors they are?


But, I want to learn from this and let any comfort zones be right for our times. There are positives to note and lessons to be learned; I don’t want to forget them in a rush to make life exactly the same as before. I fear that would be a mistake.



For starters, my busy comfort zone, the one where I am happiest busiest, is definitely not coming back. xv





 

Still In My Comfort Zone ( And Could Be Worn Over The Sweats)

reiss embroidered  ||  joie lace  ||  isabel marant ruffle  ||  the great ruffle  ||  cece crepe  ||  vince silk navy  ||  vince silk chiffon




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6 Comments

Linda B

Once again, I am so with you, Vicki! I have always been someone who reached out to anyone and everyone with at least a handshake, if not a hug. Maybe some day we can go back to that? Thinking that maybe we can’t ever brings tears to my eyes. And I worry of course especially about the long term for the people dearest to me–my children and grandchild, and my siblings (and of course my dad still, but even if he survives the pandemic, with his Alzheimer’s he is in his last life chapter.) But what will happen to my son, who hasn’t had a girlfriend in a long time, let alone a life partner–how and when will he be able to start dating again? What will it be like for my precious wee Lucy if she (and her whole generation of children) only feel comfortable with their immediate family, and never learn that one can greet others with physical touch? What about my sister, who is a restaurant owner, struggling to maintain some carry-out business and to apply for federal support (a terrible process, by the way!). . .This morning, I am feeling the grimness of all this. I need to take a deep breath and right my ship’s course, again. It doesn’t help anything to be in this negative place.

So I will share, for what it is worth, some accomplishments from yesterday. I went for a nice long bike ride with my husband and enjoyed the beautiful spring weather. . .And I finished up my current thread-painting project, a big yellow rose on a green linen shirt. I keep plugging away at creating a bit of a collection that I hope to put on sale somewhere, somehow, but it has occurred to me that who knows what people will buy anytime soon! Still, I am a maker. . . and will keep up the joy of creating.

Reply
Vicki

Creating is everything and there will be a time soon when we feel the need to look and renew. All the questions you ask, Linda are the same we ask… I am trying to think those fortunate enough to come out of this will be smarter and stronger.
David started bike riding today… and loved it… it’s not for me.. he went very early and enjoyed the quiet… He may be a bit sore tomorrow I think!

Reply
DD

I am definately not in my comfort zone either and “worrying” has become a constant. Let us all take it day by day and not look too far ahead because otherwise it becomes too overwhelming.

Reply
anitapelayorivera

Dearest Vicki,

How true this is for me. I too am a very “touchy-feely” sort of person. When I go visit friends in their shoppes or at their homes, we always greet one another with lots of hugs; the same was true for my classroom with my little students being masters of warm hugs and affection. All that is gone now. My “comfort zone” of teaching in the classroom, watching kids’ reactions to one another when they read their own stories, huddling in a tight, small group of kids to help them discover the wonders of math and practicing the French custom of greeting my intern with a “câlin et un bisous” in the morning – all gone. Now, my comfort zone has been in the painful process of being deconstructed and built into literally, a machine. Online classroom presence has taken a toll on all of us teachers, who are trying to learn in a short period of time how to create an online classroom, how to upload large files and how to create effective Google Meet meetings with so many bells and whistles, it’s making my head spin. However, like any other challenge, this is making us more resilient. Oh Vicki, I feel as if this year will be awash; I can’t see us going to our favorite shoppes, to a beloved garden center to not just buy flowers but to talk to other gardeners, to plan just a simple tea party or a picnic any time too soon. Yes, we are telling our comfort zones to expand the territory and make space for change.

Reply
Vicki

I too fear the year will disappear and our favourite pastimes will have to wait… I admire you learning this new way and it is wonderful to add another skill set to your bow, whether you use it often or not. It’s a performance of sorts I imagine and I guess you will learn your angles, your moods and everything else in a way to translate across cyberspace. Enjoy a rest break this weekend Anita… look after you and nurture your creativity…

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