CASSANDRA JENKINS — Ways to cope with 14-day self-quarantine

Published 12:08 am Wednesday, March 18, 2020

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A majority of Mid- and South County residents are beginning to feel the effects of the coronavirus pandemic — figuratively.

While a handful of the community is worried about contracting the actual virus, many others are modestly concerned with the aftermath it has caused.

Simple everyday tasks are all of a sudden becoming a real chore. Grocery shopping used to be an item on our to-do lists that we skipped all week, but now it is a daily battle of time and necessity.

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Parents are struggling to find childcare with the closing of schools and daycares, malls are shut, restaurants are closing, trips are canceled, kids are home and most of us are more than likely losing our minds.

So if you are sitting at home, watching the hundredth rerun of Frozen II and thinking, “I am not going to make it two more weeks like this,” here is a list of things to do in self-quarantine that won’t drive you crazy:

No. 1: Spend time with your family.

So many of us work day-to-day, paycheck-to-paycheck and sunrise-to-sunset and often catch ourselves wishing, hoping for a break, even a little one.

This may be your break. Unwarranted as it is, the best thing we can often do is find the blessing.

So play a game of charades, wipe off those old Candyland board games or dusty deck of cards, gather in the living room, build a fort and enjoy each other’s company.

No. 2: Learn a new skill, particularly a fun one.

I’ve told myself for years that I wanted to learn to play the guitar, but I’ve always been too busy. If I were going to be quarantined for two weeks starting tomorrow, the first thing I’d do is go out, buy a guitar and start my lessons via YouTube.

If you have two weeks indoors, learn to cook, bake a cake, practice an instrument, learn to paint, start something you’ve always wanted to do but never had the time for.

No. 3: Read and Relax.

The world is in chaos right now and while staying up-to-date with accurate information is important, remember to take a moment to put down the phone, turn off the TV, draw a hot bath, read a book and relax.

Reading is a way to pull focus from the problems outside and fall into someone else’s story, someone else’s struggles and triumphs. Forget about your own mounting issues for a little while and relax, they will still be there waiting for you after all.

In conclusion, if your first instinct is to make a list of all the things you never had time to do like scrub your bathroom, cleanout the attic, organize the closet, alphabetize your folders or catch up on a load of laundry, kudos to you.

But if you’re more like me and are reading those lists online of things to do while quarantined that include cleaning, studying or being productive, and saying “Nope!” this is more of a list for you.

In the end, whatever you do, just remember to always look for the blessing in every situation.

Cassandra Jenkins is a news reporter at The Port Arthur News. She can be reached at