Coping with being cooped up

I was gardening, when two kids approached, asking for newspapers to make a papier-maché pinata to cheer up their socially isolated grandpa. That made me smile. Then I realized I had no leftover newspaper because it was not being delivered to my home and that made me sad.

There have been many things that have saddened me lately. Missing my grandkids is my biggest one. What is yours? How are you coping with being cooped up on command? Are you taking extra good care of yourself?

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Here are nine suggestions for coping as we coop apart together:

• Eat for your health like never before. No more procrastination. Get serious on this. Whole organic foods and clean filtered water is a must now more than ever. Please give your gut a break from the onslaught of genetically modified foods and microbe-killing pesticide spray. If you think it is too expensive or time consuming to search and buy healthier produce, please do the math. What is the expense of you or your loved ones getting sick? If you stop burdening your immune system with chemically altered Frankenfoods, you will at least give it a chance to be able to fight for you.

• Sleep well and rest often. This is wartime on your fight or flight response. It is exhausting to keep up with the news and the challenges with which we have been quite suddenly targeted. Nap and rest without guilt. You need it to rejuvenate, repair and replenish your energy.

• Stop following the news non-stop. It fluctuates so dramatically right now that your emotions are being roller-coastered, draining neurochemicals and your energy at a time when you need them most.

• Get sunshine — and plenty of it. Get out and walk in it or sit with skin exposed. Vitamin D builds immunity.

• Get out in nature if and where you can. Find an allowable fresh-air place to breathe in and admire the opening of spring. Do this daily.

• Learn something new. Food for the mind keeps your thoughts in line. It is also anti-aging, which means stronger immunity.

• Play as though your soul depends on it — because it does.

• Share your laughter, your feelings and your wisdom. Tell your story. That is why you here at this time. Share your time (volunteer to make sandwiches, deliver groceries or help at a hot line).

Even though we Canadians are pretty stoic in our duty to help each other by being separate, and even though we have our wry sense of humour that keeps us looking for a bright side, I think it is important to also acknowledge our feelings and share them in a way that helps us connect even more.

In so doing, we may even help those who suffer regularly with chronic sadness or depression.

Perhaps now they may not feel quite as alone in their plight.

Cathy Lidster, GCFP, ABF, ACNRT, is a stay-at-home health consultant, helping those who wish to help themselves live a happier, healthier, and more vital life so they can raise future generations of healthier, happier and wiser humans. She can be reached by phone at 250-819-9041 or by email at More articles about health and nourishing wellness can be found online at

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