Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

How Are You Feeling?

How is everyone feeling this week? How is your mental health, your physical health, and your stress level lately? What are your plans for Thanksgiving next week? We’re staying home, just the four of us, and I’m in the process of figuring out what I want to cook and what I’d prefer outsourcing to small businesses in the neighborhood who could definitely use some extra love over the coming weeks and months. (This herb and apple pudding sounds good! And Joanie has her heart set on baking a pumpkin pie.) Otherwise, I’m feeling pretty fine. I need to exercise more and snack less and do better at keeping my blood pressure under control. I’m on medication for it but it’s been alarmingly high when I check it, so I need to avoid online drama (like the “keep schools open debate” which, if you follow me on Instagram, you know has taken up a lot of mental space for me as I’ve been aggressively advocating to close the damn schools and save countless lives [I’m not interested in debating this here, so if you feel differently, I respect that but ask that you take your thoughts elsewhere, please.]).

Anyhoo, I know this is an increasingly high-pressure and nerve-wracking time for many. We all have Covid fatigue just as things are really revving up around the country. Plus, the election drama is exhausting and enraging. The holidays – and related pressure and feelings of loneliness that often accompany them – start next week, and for many of us, it’s been way too long since we had a real vacation. If you are stressed, I feel you! It’s going to be rough out there for the next few months. I hope we can continue to use this space to connect, to keep tabs on each other, and to celebrate small (and maybe big) victories while venting and supporting through the the challenges ahead. I’ve had my hands full with both kids home around the clock, and doing some education advocacy, so I appreciate those who have stuck around here even as I’ve cut back so much on the time and attention I’ve been able to devote to the site. There is light at the end of the tunnel, though. Such great vaccine news this week! Things will improve again. We just have to get through the hard next few months. Let’s hang in there together, ok?

41 comments… add one
  • Miss MJ November 19, 2020, 9:52 am

    We’re staying in for Thanksgiving, too, so it will just be the two of us. But, even so, we’re ordering a fried turkey and pecan pie, and I’m going to make some sides. If the warm weather holds, we may set up a projector and pipe football through it outside at the condo so we can visit outdoors and distanced with our neighbors, many of whom are also not traveling for the first time in years this holiday. Also, assuming the weather cooperates, I’ll visit with my dad during the weekend. It’s not ideal, but it’s not all bad. I’m trying to be positive about it all, especially since the light is at the end of the tunnel. Post-holidays, I’ve got to get back to eating healthier, exercising more and drinking less. But honestly, right now, with everything going on, I’m giving myself grace and saying fuck it.

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  • ktfran November 19, 2020, 10:11 am

    We are also staying home for Thanksgiving. The husband is an only child so we did invite his parents over. They’re still young and healthy (aren’t even 60 yet). All four of us are taking similar Covid precautions and have been from the start.

    I’m tired. Work is wearing me out. We’re so, so busy and there is no end in site. I’m also sad. IL did so well in curbing the pandemic at the beginning. We’ve blown up in recent months and are now one of the worse states. I know the husband and I are doing our parts and taking this seriously, but it’s sad and disappointing that nobody else is.

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    • ktfran November 19, 2020, 10:21 am

      Oh, I did order two pumpkin pies from the bakery across the street! They’re only 9”, so I had to make sure I had enough for two to three slices total. We also ordered their sourdough for leftover sandwiches and their bake at home croissants for the weekend. Oh, and dinner rolls. You guys, I spent like $90 at this bakery for next week. I may have went overboard.

      The holiday is going to be carb infested. I’m ok with that.

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      • Copa November 19, 2020, 11:27 am

        This is how I’ve been with a flower shop I like, haha. I scheduled an autumn bouquet to be sent to my mom next week with a little note telling her I miss her since she’s sad I won’t be home for Thanksgiving. I’ll probably buy some for myself as a small mood booster. I signed up for a virtual wreath-making workshop through them. It was just a few purchases but they all added up and I had a bit of sticker shock. But this company donates a good chunk of proceeds to charity and sources everything locally so I’m like, I helped…?

      • ktfran November 19, 2020, 12:48 pm

        I occasionally stop in the flower shop down the street. I’ll probably stop in next Wednesday.

      • hfantods November 20, 2020, 2:29 pm

        I also spent $90 at my church Christmas market, which went online this year! Lots of jams and baked goods ?

  • Copa November 19, 2020, 11:20 am

    We’re also staying home for Thanksgiving. It’ll be me, my boyfriend, my cousin whose family lives on the west coast, and my boyfriend’s friend whose family lives on the east coast. Both of them are single, live alone, WFH, and have been cautious, so while there is some risk, I think it’s relatively low. We’ll be getting our turkey and probably a few side dishes from a local restaurant, and making some sides and desserts at home. I’m going to try my hand at a pecan pie.

    My mental health is… not great. There were some layoffs at work, so I now have more work, and it has been very, very busy. The days are getting shorter and colder, and obviously I knew it was coming, but I’m not ready for it. I started drinking more than I did before COVID, and have noticed it creeping up even more. So I’m now trying to go back to my pre-pandemic norm, which was saving it for the weekend.

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  • anonymousse November 19, 2020, 11:23 am

    I’m exhausted. I thought I’d be happier once the election was over, but maybe I’ll feel better once the lame duck obstructionist is truly gone and we undo some of the wreckage. Here’s hoping!

    I do follow you on Instagram, and I’m glad you’re taking a stand, Wendy. We chose remote over hybrid and I am feeling very privileged that we have the ability to do that. To me, it was the only safe option. It’s hard being a teacher to a first grader and try to keep my nearly 5 year old engaged and entertained while her brother is on zooms and doing schoolwork all day. I truly don’t know how other families do it, be it working from home full time, with multiple kids, with other challenges. It’s a shitty situation. I still wish we could just cancel the entire everything of this year and hibernate until it’s over but our government doesn’t care about human life or it’s responsibility to care for it’s citizens. Ugh. I truly hope after this is all said and done that we actually learn from this colossal travesty and enact some real change.

    We declined our family invitation to dinner and I’m glad we are avoiding the drama and being responsible. We will just cook a smallish meal at home.

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  • LadyInPurpleNotRed November 19, 2020, 11:31 am

    Staying home as well for Thanksgiving–just me and my boyfriend. I’m making a scaled down Thanksgiving dinner and I’m kind of excited for a low-key holiday–trying to focus on that and not on missing my family on the east coast. Both mental health and physical health are a bit up and down. Trying to get and stay in a working out routine–works for awhile and then I get thrown off–so trying to keep that up.

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  • ArtsyGirl November 19, 2020, 12:41 pm

    We are having a small meal at my (local) in-laws which will be nice. I am in charge of desserts and my husband is making crab cakes and stuffing. I do plan on buying at least one turkey after Thanksgiving so we can have leftovers.

    Mentally I am exhausted – the roller coaster of emotions following the election has been draining. I am continuously horrified at how Trump is behaving and how the GOP is allowing him to fling around wild accusations and baseless conspiracies all in the name of appeasing him. They keep saying he needs time to come around and he has the right to investigate fraud claims which all amounts to tacit approval of him actively undermining the democratic process. I want to have faith in the system, but am so tired of people defending and emboldening Trump. So many people are suffering due to the pandemic and all he wants to do is block president elect Biden from getting briefings that Trump himself refuses to attend.

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  • Moneypenny November 19, 2020, 12:47 pm

    I’m going to go to my parents’ for T-giving (they live very close by and have been the only people I have seen other than my bf- and I haven’t seen them in person at this point in ~3 weeks. And thankfully they take this seriously and wear masks and generally stay home unless they need to go out for something). My mom doesn’t feel like making Turkey so we’re having Hungarian goulash and I’m making roasted brussel sprouts. It’ll be nice and low key, which is what we usually do so it won’t be very different.

    I have gone nowhere in the last couple of weeks, and I’m feeling a little stir crazy. I keep looking up airBnb’s in different places and then I just close the tab! I’m really busy with work, and it’s frustrating because I’m basically working on my own with no support and I’m just SO over this. I can’t even get my bosses to respond to a message/question in a reasonable amount of time. I am really only looking forward to Christmas right now, only because I want to decorate and get a tree! I figure that might cheer me up. And I’ve been shopping already for gifts on Etsy- I want to avoid stores and also support small businesses, and there are so many cute things on there!

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  • Witchmom3 November 19, 2020, 5:59 pm

    My husband and I are going over to our daughter’s house for Thanksgiving. Our two sons will be spending it with their significant others’ families. I am looking forward to a very small, quiet Thanksgiving.

    I figured that the sh*tshow was going to really start once the election was over and I was not disappointed, though I didn’t think it would be this much of a train wreck! I must say, watching Biden/Harris give daily briefings and remaining calm during this whole election fiasco is very refreshing. With regard to the vaccines, at first I had no intentions of getting it. Now with more information I’m actually excited about it. Happy Thanksgiving to all 🙂

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  • Pippa November 19, 2020, 10:03 pm

    It has been another ‘double doughnut day’ for Australia (zero new Covid community cases, zero deaths) so I’m optimistic. South Australia is in hard lockdown for a week because they had 12 cases last week, but there is the sense in Australia that we are all working hard to defeat this and we are willing to do what it takes. I’m so worried for friends in the UK and USA.

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  • Fyodor November 20, 2020, 7:54 am

    We’re hunkering down, which will suck terribly, but I think that the known potential for something to end this, even a ways off has made it a bit easier to take a mulligan on this year.

    We’ll do some stuff on zoom but we’re pretty much in isolation mode with cases exploding here (up 10x over the last few months). We were planning on doing something my wife’s parents in their garage but they opted out because cases were so high and they felt uncomfortable (which is fine with me-I’d prefer they be more careful). My brother-in-law threw a huge fit because they wouldn’t attend the large in-person indoor gathering he was throwing with his wife’s family, including her relatives flying in from Chicago.

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  • Fyodor November 20, 2020, 7:55 am

    For people hosting guests, you may want to get an air purifier-there’s a rising consensus that good air filtration can reduce the odds of indoor spread when combined with distancing.


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  • LisforLeslie November 20, 2020, 8:07 am

    I will be spending the day watching movies. I might take a walk. I haven’t been taking care of my health and I can feel it. I want to go back to Florida but now I have to figure out when it might be safest assuming that the impending spike is two to three weeks after Thanksgiving. I might wait until January to clear Christmas spreading.

    At this point, I’m just a mental wreck although there is nothing wrong in my life. Shit, I just got a raise and a nice bonus. All my problems are of my own making and I’m totally and completely unmotivated to correct any of them.

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  • Kate November 20, 2020, 10:59 am

    I have all these basic bitch fashion bloggers in my Instagram explore tab, you know the ones, probably all voted for Trump, skinny, white, long blonde or highlighted hair, extensions, tan, all showing the same sweaters, boots, jeans, and leggings… so, all of them are showing “Thanksgiving inspiration” outfits, like it’s just normal and we’re all going to someone’s house for dinner and need to dress up. They kind of crack me up, it’s like, who is even wearing these clothes? Anyway, I guess they need to make a living.

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    • Dear Wendy November 20, 2020, 12:43 pm

      The normalizing of everything is what’s so bizarre to me! These aren’t normal times; it’s ok to show that.

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  • hfantods November 20, 2020, 2:35 pm

    I’m so tired. Work has been frustrating in and of itself aside from COVID. I’ve been eating a lot too. I started seeing a therapist a few months ago. I like her a lot. But I feel like I make improvements mentally and then I fall back again. But I am hard on myself.

    A positive that’s come out of this that I am 75% percent done my Christmas shopping because I have nothing else to do and I’m worried there will be more closures (which is a good thing!)/slow shipping.

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  • Bittergaymark November 20, 2020, 7:14 pm

    I had four glorious zen night in the desert. I watered everything… The yard looks great. The house looks great. Everything out there is fucking great. Ideal — really.

    As a big project, I filled two giant mid century planter boxes with Golden Barrel cacti and white rock. I hiked the desert every day… I fed the birds. Oh, and I really missed all the lizards… They go away and hibernate in October. Strange to think of them all asleep deep underground through out the planted desert.

    Now… back in LA… things feel more maddening and claustrophobic.

    Can somebody just slap my bitch up? And by bitch I mean that daughter fucker Trump? Yes, needless to say one hour in LA and I am decidedly less Zen…

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  • bloodymediocrity November 20, 2020, 7:23 pm

    My mental health? It’s terrible and fine all at the same time. I’m feeling incredibly stressed out because everyone around me is in worse shape. My wife’s migraines are out of control. I feel like a garbage parent because my focus is always elsewhere. I’m holding things together because I have to but most days I’m ready to sit in the shower and do nothing but cry.

    I’m exchanging pies for Thanksgiving, but certainly not eating anywhere but home. Probably will watch Star Trek and sit around sad. A typical Thursday.

    I hate this stupid pandemic.

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  • Kate November 21, 2020, 7:21 am

    So, The Queen’s Gambit… I saw that it was a book, and started reading it. It’s great. I’m only watching as much of the show as I’ve read in the book. The show is pretty good too. The mid-century details are off the hook. And the story and some of the characters… anyway, definitely worth a read, watch, or both. You don’t have to be interested in chess.

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  • Kate November 21, 2020, 7:55 am

    Also, if anyone wants fitness…

    Nothing has ever made me slim AND muscular like T-25 with Shaun T (Beach Body). I am lazy and hate to sweat, so sometimes I’ll go with another program that’s more weights, and skip the cardio, but then my body shape gets out of whack. I go back to T-25 and don’t skip the sweatier workouts and bam. It’s only 25 minutes a day, and the first level requires no equipment. You can do levels 2 and 3 with resistance bands, or you can use weights.

    And if you need even more motivation, get some of those high waisted leggings and a long bra and you immediately have a small waist and big booty. I picked up a set at Target and it’s so flattering.

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  • MaterialsGirl November 21, 2020, 1:34 pm

    Got off the bow flex waitlist! But won’t deliver for three months at least. That’s okay, not doing much heavy lifting anyway.

    On that note: my son was born yesterday!

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    • ktfran November 21, 2020, 2:40 pm

      Congrats MG! I hope all is well.

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    • Copa November 21, 2020, 4:52 pm

      Congrats, @MG! On both the Bowflex waitlist and the baby, but on the birth of your son! 😉 I hope you are all well and everything went smoothly at the hospital.

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    • anonymousse November 22, 2020, 7:47 am

      Congratulations!! That’s wonderful.

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    • hfantods November 22, 2020, 7:59 am

      Congrats MG!!

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    • Moneypenny November 23, 2020, 1:18 pm

      Congratulations MG!! That’s wonderful! Hope all is well 🙂

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  • TheLadyE November 22, 2020, 2:47 am

    My birthday is Monday. Friday night I performed at an outdoor comedy show and my best friend came with me and filmed me, so I think I’m going to make a Youtube page and start putting my sets up! Tonight, my friends took me out to dinner for my birthday. I’ve been SUPER careful this entire time, and I was less careful tonight than I have been since March – as in, I ate indoors in a restaurant. However, we were one of 2 parties at the Italian place I chose because I knew it would be sparsely filled. It was nice to feel kind of normal.

    My boyfriend and I are on a bit of a break…I guess. I haven’t really wanted to talk much about it because it’s just so damn disappointing and frustrating. Basically he is taking some time to figure out his own life, and he’s been checked out of our relationship for weeks (months, honestly) while he runs everywhere with work and other obligations being overwhelmed and neglecting our relationship & being distant from me. I’m just…sad. Sad and disappointed. Like, he didn’t come to dinner with my friends and I don’t even know if I’ll see him on my actual birthday. Just really disappointing and honestly shitty. I would have never expected this from him. We had a really good year+ and there’s nothing wrong with US, but it’s really his own shit, and he’s pushing me away. It sucks. I’m hoping that we can reconcile and start fresh…right now just basically giving him the space he seems to need. And that’s all I’m going to say about that.

    Anyway. I’m throwing myself back into (safe, socially distanced) comedy so as to not go insane. Thank goodness for my dogs, too. Work is going well. I got new glasses – yay. And I’m having a tiny Thanksgiving with a guy friend who has been in my COVID bubble. I’m getting CBD oil and gummies and some really good wine and we’re gonna numb TF out.

    Happy freaking birthday to me.

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    • Kate November 22, 2020, 7:24 am

      Oh man. I’m sorry you’re feeling like this. Good to hear about the comedy though.

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    • anonymousse November 22, 2020, 7:49 am

      I’m sorry, LadyE.

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    • hfantods November 22, 2020, 8:00 am

      I’m sorry LadyE. That sucks so much. I hope you do have a good birthday.

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    • TheLadyE November 22, 2020, 3:16 pm

      Thanks, everyone. I really appreciate all the good wishes. <3

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    • Copa November 22, 2020, 5:30 pm

      @TheLadyE I’m very sorry to hear this! I imagine a pandemic break/break-up is extra difficult since it’s harder to throw yourself into the normal break-up activities so many people suggest, so I hope you’re taking good care of yourself and hanging in there. Hopefully you can find some great socially distant comedy opportunities to take your mind off things and have fun. I also hope you have a happy birthday notwithstanding.

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    • Dear Wendy November 23, 2020, 8:52 am

      Sorry to hear about the boyfriend, LadyE, but glad you have good, supportive friends and positive things to focus on. Happy birthday!!

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    • Moneypenny November 23, 2020, 1:21 pm

      I’m sorry, LadyE. That’s really too bad. I am wishing you all the best. And also, happy birthday! I hope today is special (despite everything going on) and that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving too.

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    • TheLadyE November 26, 2020, 12:58 am

      Well, the good news is my boyfriend came over to celebrate my birthday and brought gifts…and still has another to bring (I think he’s making a special dinner). We got to spend some time together and said we loved each other. He’s still struggling with managing his schedule and obligations, but he still loves me and I love him, and it was so nice to see him. Seems like it’s the start of mending things back together, which we talked about a bit and will continue to.

      The best present I could have gotten for my birthday was to see him and spend time with him, so that’s good. 🙂 I am…cautiously/hopefully optimistic, since our actual relationship was never the issue.

      Also, if there could be a vaccine for COVID like, now please, that would be fanfreakingtastic. Ugh.

      Anyways…Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

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      • Kate November 26, 2020, 5:56 am

        I do hope you two can see some growth and progress to your relationship after the vaccine is distributed, but it worries me that your friends and boyfriend now seem ok with potentially exposing you to coronavirus, months before you’d be able to get a vaccine. Previously he was scared to death of getting you sick, right? What changed? Please hang in there a few more months and don’t take more risks. This relationship isn’t worth your life.

    • TheLadyE November 27, 2020, 2:49 am

      @Kate, my boyfriend is still terrified of giving the virus to me so we wear masks in the house and sit apart, we don’t sleep in the same bed, and we never get close enough to possibly have him infect me. We do hug, but we’re masked.

      TBH, my friends take more risks than I do generally, but still not anything like going out unmasked or going where there are large groups. I’m still being very careful, for sure. I’m really hoping we can get a vaccine within the next few months though.

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  • bondgirl November 23, 2020, 10:10 am

    I hate traveling for the holidays anyway, so I’m kinda glad we get to stay home for this one and plan whatever menu we want. My mother would normally be harassing me to come over anyway, but I had a possible covid exposure (not direct but still concerning) this week and my test results won’t be coming in before the weekend…so I think that got me out of every obligation. I think my family is still gathering though, which personally I think is a bad idea but it doesn’t matter what I think….at least I have an excuse to not go over and I’ll have peace knowing I’m not putting my elderly relatives’ health at risk.

    Honestly I feel physically fine, but my mental health has tanked in the last month or two. All I ever want to do these days is lounge around with good wine/craft beer and sleep. Been forcing myself to stay physically active though, between maintaining my physical health and the need to exercise my dog. Easier on the nice weather days, but not so much on the cold and rainy days.

    Judging by the other commenters, I’m definitely not the only person mentally struggling and I hope we can all take some comfort in knowing that. Hope yall can still get some joy out of the holiday this week.

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