Hello, everyone! I have not blogged on my website for a long time, and I apologize for that. It, like many things, has taken a back seat during these unusual times. But I’m back and I hope to stay that way!

When I left my office on March 13th (appropriately, a Friday) I had my laptop with me and VPN access to try working from home. However, none of us expected that we would not be seeing the inside of our offices for months. The intention was to start to transition to a work from home environment, and see how it went. That weekend we got word that someone in another company within our building had tested positive, and the company shut down. At that time most of us did not understand the seriousness of what we were facing. It’s safe to say we do now.

For the most part I have kept to my routine. My morning commute would usually take upwards of an hour and I decided to still get up at my usual early morning and divide that hour of unexpected free time between writing and house cleaning. I stuck to that—generally. At first it wasn’t too bad. We thought we’d be back at work in a month or so, and this was a temporary situation. Now, of course, four months into working from home, we’ve realized that whatever happens in the future, this will be going on for a while to come.

Fortunately, I like my own company. Over time I did find that the isolation took its toll. I was far more easily agitated, and small problems became meltdown-worthy situations. It got so bad I reached out to a therapist who guided me in the past and started talking to her again. Self-care in these difficult times is so important—and necessary.

My writing came in fits and starts. There were a few weeks where I literally could not write and spent those morning hours watching TV. I developed a fondness for Game Show Network (Pyramid and Master Minds, yeah!) and also for the mystery movies on the Hallmark Mysteries and Movies channel. Nothing too Lifetime or gritty crime drama of major Hollywood movies, I wanted the mellower shows. Everyone’s way of coping was unique—this was mine.

I have managed to keep things together, for the most part. My house is still not spic and span but it is cleaner and I have done small house projects. I painted the shower stall. I planted a garden. I’m going through closets. I rarely saw my house during the day when I was spending twelve hours away from it and now, I fight the urge to tear everything down to the studs and rebuild. It is my home, and I am fortunate that it is also my sanctuary. Still, I see the shabbiness and know that there is a lot I want to do.

With all that I have two books coming out and have kept to my release pattern on others. Life, and writing, does go on. Writing is important to me, in more ways than I can count. It focuses me and allows me an outlet for all the thoughts that can otherwise take up free rent.

I hope that all of you are getting by in these uncertain times. Stay safe, and stay well.

Claire

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