Quarantine Diaries: Week 1

masksWell, you’ve survived week 1.

If you’re not one of the a-holes photographed partying in South Padre Island, you’re probably settling in to your quarantined sector, keen on saving the world by doing absolutely nothing, and enjoying your new handwashing techniques from the comfort of your own home.


You are now armed with the knowledge that things are about to get a whole lot worse.

How much worse?

That’s the exciting part! No one really knows.

Welcome to a global pandemic; it looks like we’ll be here awhile.

I had a short season of life where I tried to be a runner. I’ll be honest, I’m a bit of a sparkler when it comes to exercise. Sparkler meaning, I burn bright, but not for very long.

Look, when I am on, I’m fricking on!

My running phase was no exception. I ran just about every 5k race I could sign up for. A 5k run required little to no preparation. They were fun, short, and gave me a false sense of confidence in my ability to run longer races with the same, zero prep, strategy that had served me well.

When I ran my first 10k it hurt like hell.

Coronavirus initially sounded like a 10k, but is looking more like a marathon. I feel equally unprepared for this moment.

But here we are, running none the less.

My goal is not to win, but to finish.

So, while I downloaded the exercise app with the 500+ at-home workouts and hope to try a couple in the coming weeks; I haven’t gotten to them yet and that’s okay.

And though my fridge is stocked with yummy food and the Wal-mart delivery girl knows me by name; last night we ordered take out and that’s okay.

I have a stack of books I plan to read but haven’t picked up one. That’s okay.

And yesterday I sat outside to write and wound up staring at a blank page until I finally just closed my eyes and felt the sun shine on my face. That’s okay too.

I feel such a sense of unrest and helplessness as I sit at home while many of my friends and family members continue to care for patients in hospitals and doctors’ offices.

I have a deeper respect for grocery store workers and delivery drivers who unknowingly signed up to stand on the front lines of a global health crisis.

I am burdened for the restaurant and hospitality industry and the devastating blows to the economy. And honestly, I’m having a little bit of a difficult time accepting any of this as a “new normal”.

That’s f**king okay!

What’s helped me most this week is just cutting myself a little slack as I lean into the uncertainties of when, how, how many, and how long, and learn to be okay in a space with just enough answers to take the next step.

We all process things differently; and what’s right for me might not be right for you. You might be killing it in quarantine; with your color-coded schedules and endless family fun nights. (Can I just say that when the PTA sent out, “spirit week schedules” my only thought was, “oh hell no”.) If that’s good for you, you’re amazing. But if that is not you, you’re still amazing. There are no rules on how to cope with the changes we’ve faced and the ones still ahead. We make them up as we go.

I want to give a shout out to the girls like me, feeling a little unprepared for the race ahead. Perhaps we can link virtual arms and run this race together?

What’s going on in your world? I’d love to hear from you because, as it turns out, plagues are super lonely.

Much love friends,

Xoxo, Shaena

“Two are better than one…If either of them falls down, one can help the other up.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-

Quarantine Diaries: You can, because you have to.

cave2I once went spelunking in Carlsbad. Did you know there are 119 caves in Carlsbad National Park? If you are lucky enough to find someone with the skills to explore them, who is also crazy enough to ask you to come along, you should go. If you do, you might find yourself dangling from a rope 30 feet off the ground before realizing if you have to google the word spelunking before accepting the invitation, you have no business being there.

There I was, 30 feet off the ground and completely gassed.

“Bring me back down,” I smiled cheerfully down at my companion. “I’m too tired.”

And that my friends, is when shit got real.

It went something like this:

Him- “Take a break”

Me- “I don’t want to take a break I want to come down. Bring me down.”

Him- “You can’t come down, that isn’t the way the gear works.” (Side bar: probably a discussion we should have had beforehand but okay.)

Me- “I don’t care how the gear works, I know how my arms work and I need to come down”

Him- “You can’t come down, you need to go up”

Me- “I can’t go up. Call someone.”

Him- “We’re in a cave”

Cue dramatic music and crocodile tears. Cut to adventure Barbie dangling helplessly 30 feet in the air while whispering expletives at no one in particular. Her companion making vain attempts to reassure her she is strong enough to save herself while simultaneously attempting to fashion a very dangerous method of coming to her rescue.


Him- “You can, because you have to

And then I did.


I’m writing this at home in my bed, pajamas still on, it’s Monday 5:30 AM. Waiting for a conference call that starts in an hour, I could have waited until 9, but what for, I’m awake. In the past several days I haven’t slept much, eyes glued to a screen bringing new news every hour, while the same words spin on a loop in my mind:




Flatten the curve.

Vulnerable populations.

Toilet paper.




Social distancing.

We are a country displaced in our own homes and we are afraid.

And I’m reminded of all the times I’ve been afraid and heard my voice outside my heart saying,

I can’t do this.

But then I did.


I’m watching my daughter asleep in my bed. Her collection of inhalers, O2 readers, and thermometers scattered like books on the night stand. My son sleeping soundly alone in his room. In a few short hours they will awake to day one of a spring break that is not what we planned. But the craziest part is they will not complain, not today anyway. They’ll be happy to sleep in, watch movies, and make messes. They will smile and laugh the way that kids do, and I will carry their burden of uncertainty along with mine. This moment feels lonely and I can hear my heart beat in steady rhythm the thing I fear the most, that I. am. not. enough.

I can’t.

I can’t.

I can’t.

I can’t.

But then I will. Because I have to.


Sending so much love to whoever is reading this. You are not alone. It’s in the times when we are least assured that we can allow space in our hearts to become something more than we were the day before.

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Tim 1:7cave 1

Xoxo S