Pollen Sunday: We Will Survive

Out, out, damned pollen!

It’s day whatever of the coronavirus pandemic in the States, and I scurried out into the apartment complex to get some jogging in on our deserted tennis court. There’s only so much I could do to maintain fitness in our small apartment. Here are a few shots from that excursion, including the pollen goblins clinging to my little Tardis car.

When I first jogged out my door and into the parking lot, I thought “oh, look, some kids have used yellow chalk on the sidewalks, and the rain’s washed it away.” Nope, it wasn’t synthetic art—instead, pollen had pooled on every surface. In the near term, Nature continues on, unabated. With or without humans’ direct involvement.

After jogging, I mooded out to RUSH’s “Losing It,” which has always been poignant but is now . . . what with Neil’s death and coronavirus and climate change and everyone seemingly imperiled (if nothing else, financially)  . . . deeper than ever before. As a gig and part-time worker, I got the late word just today that I may not work again in the office until who-knows-when.

It’s easy to give in to unhappiness. As a person who’s warred with depression for decades, I almost want to quit. But I’m trying to beat those devils of despair away. For me, movement (physical, intellectual, emotional) often does the trick.

Tennis court dotted with pools of yellow pollen.
Pollen pools . . .

And so, I remain hopeful. I greet most passersby and feel bolstered when I see “everyday people” calling to each other with a smile, a wave, or a kind greeting— all of us from afar. It is the walkers’ and joggers’ version of singing from our balconies. We dispel the loneliness through kinetic motion. Plus, there are so many professional and amateur “helpers” out there (as Fred Rogers liked to say), that I can’t (won’t) let myself mope too much. My static grief does not help.

We can do this. We will do this.

Finally, one almost last message (for today) to any who may venture here: Stay well and keep writing, making music, drawing, painting, playing board games with your kids, dancing like a goofball (if you’re as ungraceful as I!), and helping one another out.

And now, more RUSH—


10 thoughts on “Pollen Sunday: We Will Survive

  1. Keep on truckin’, Leigh! It’s freaky and weird and oppressive but one day it’ll be over and we’ll emerge, look around, and think, ‘Wow! Life can continue.’ And we’ll taste the joy of it again.

  2. It’s so good to hear from you, Leigh. I’m glad Mother Nature continues to amaze us with her work, even if for many, it means watching it from the other side of a window. Keeping ourselves busy is the key to keeping us going during these uncertain times. And as Gloria Gaynor so proudly says – ‘I will survive…’
    Stay safe.

  3. Very well expressed Leigh. Yes its easy to despair in these awful times. I have a friend who manages to turn the black dog of depression into a pink fluffy hamster or a beautifully colored singing bird. Wish he would teach me how to do it! Anyway, stay safe and keep faith and we will get there!

  4. Oh, Leigh, your post spoke volumes to me. All I can say is ditto to everything you’ve said. This whole pandemic thing is extra hard if you already suffer from depression. Even under normal circumstances, getting through a day is like pushing a jelly up the hill. You are right about exercising when and where you can (I walk my dog every day & talk to people in a socially distanced way). Seeing beauty in nature is so important to mental health. Being creative, which for me has been also like pushing a jelly up the hill, as I comment retrospectively, almost a year on from your post. See, I’ve even felt so unmotivated, I’ve had difficulty with blogging. We will prevail. The trouble is that creative depressives usually have a big imagination, which enables them to imagine the worst. You need to read some of Matt Haig’s novels and his non-fiction, as he has suffered from mindblowing depression but has found wonderful strategies to deal with it. I just finished his latest bestselling novel, The Midnight Library. Very good it was, too.

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