If you follow me on social media you probably know that I moved 1100 miles away from my home in sunny St. Petersburg, FL last week. Moving in itself is stressful and presents challenges for staying healthy and eating well, but add coronavirus to that and you have one heck of a challenge! My husband and I (and our two cats) loaded up a giant moving truck and my car and set out for our new home in Downingtown, PA (right outside of Philadelphia) last week. We had all things accounted for to the best of our ability: pet friendly hotel booked, new house waiting for us, directions ready to go on the GPS, full tanks of gas….but what about food? “What will we eat?”, we thought. Typically I would be writing about how to select healthy items from various roadside places, but with COVID-19 we really wanted to minimize the amount of interaction we had with others, which meant minimizing the amount of takeout food we consumed. So I packed two days of lunches, and healthy snacks to keep us fueled on the road.
Here’s what I packed:
- Sandwiches. We had chickpea salad sandwiches on whole grain bread. The whole grain severed as complex carbs, keeping a steady supply of energy during our drive. The chickpeas provided protein, and the veggies mixed in added phytonutrients and fiber!
- Tofu wraps. Similar to the sandwiches, these wraps offered variety while on our long drive!
- Peanut butter crackers (homemade, not store bought). I used natural no-salt, no-oil peanut butter sandwiched between multigrain crackers.
- Kind bars - hey, they’re convenient!
I have to admit that writing about eating healthy while traveling seems a bit out of touch during a time when we’re being asked to shelter at home. However, this was our reality the past few weeks. Between traveling to close on our home in PA and then finally moving across 7 states, movement was an unavoidable factor in our lives the last month. Now we are home, and we are happy and content to stay in place, enjoying our new home, and embracing this slower pace.
Like all things, this period of stillness will end, and life will once again return to a normal (read quicker) pace. I find comfort in taking time to feel gratitude for the things around me: the sound of birds chirping all day, the crisp early spring air we’re breathing in the northeast, the walks around our neighborhood after dinner, the afternoon sun on my face, and having time to sip coffee slowly out of a real mug (not a to-go cup) in the morning.
How this time feels for you right now is largely dependent on your perspective. I’m acutely aware of how it is a privilege to enjoy the things I just mentioned during a time like this, when so many people face unemployment, uncertainty and grief over the things they are losing or missing out on. I know several people who have lost their jobs, who have had to cancel their weddings, vacations, and other celebrations. I too, have my own set of challenges stemming from this, however I am choosing to focus on what feels right in my world instead. Anxiety and restlessness are two cords connected to fear and when we choose fear we say no to love (the opposite of fear). Anxiety is a messenger that when embraced, can offer deeper insight about our internal landscape. Take this time to sit with yourself and connect to your own intuition for what you need. Instead of shoving our big feelings down so far that we can no longer feel their heaviness, what would happen if we allowed ourselves to feel everything?
If I can be of help in this time, please reach out. We truly are all connected and remembering our humanity during this pandemic is paramount if we are to get through it.Be well and be kind.