March 12 2020
Borders closed around the world.
People scrambled to escape various countries only to find themselves trapped in foreign lands feeling abandoned by their home countries.
My clients are single moms around the world.
I felt like I was being called to stand up and lead but I froze.
Overwhelmed and paralyzed by fear and anxiety, I didn’t want to lead. I wanted to hide.
I run a travel and lifestyle group of nearly 7000 single moms. Every post since the World Health Organization announced that covid19 was a pandemic has been filled with fear and anxiety about the virus.
There was no escaping the rhetoric.
I created a topic thread to keep all virus related posts under one thread.
Some members agreed. A lot didn’t.
The views on my blog dropped significantly overnight. People were distracted.
My income dropped with it.
Typically, my FB group Single Moms DO Travel gets up to 100 requests to join every two days.
The numbers dropped to to less than three a day overnight.
People were no longer looking to travel.
My Inner Circle Member’s Club that was gaining 1 to 3 members a day ever since I announced the new low pricing of $25.99 a month also took a hit.
With job uncertainty, people grew reluctant to take on any new expenses.
Luckily, all my current members know especially now how important being a part of a empowered and supportive virtual community of single moms is, so we stay strong.
March 16 2020
Days before the WHO’s announcement, I had just announced the very first SMDT Vacay and sold 6 paid-in-full spots. This was literally years in the making.
Overnight all interest seemed to disappear and I knew I could not promote a vacation during a pandemic.
Instead, I made the difficult decision to cut losses, cancel the trip, and reimburse everyone.
If that were not enough, one of my teens started to pick up on the low vie energy around the world.
She wrote a letter asking me if we could move back to Austin.
I was heart broken.
I went back and forth with it and actually agreed to move back based on many factors. I announced it to family and my community here in Merida.
I started getting stuff ready to sell and looked at tickets as the pandemic continued to spread.
I looked at places back in Austin, TX.
And then, I snapped out of it.
We are home. Merida is home and has been for a year now.
I delivered the news to my teens.
One asked if she could go back to sleep. The other burst into tears.
My heart broke for her.
Austin, TX is comfort for us. It always has been the place we ran back to when things got bad but this time I knew it was not the right decision overall for our family
I do weigh my teens thoughts and feelings heavily when it comes to us making decisions for our family. However, I recognized that my initial agreement had more to do with me being so use to running when things go tough. It is what I did for years but not this time.
We would face this head on together.
My teen that struggled with my decision woke up the next day seemingly looking relieved and happy even though I gave her a soul crushing decision the night prior.
She sat by me on our big comfy sofa for most of the day watching trashy reality TV. This is kind of a big deal considering my teens mainly spend time at friend’s houses and their bedrooms.
I was relieved to see her so happy.
Earlier today, President Trump announced the temporary closing of the US/Mexico border to all nonessential travel.
Americans should return to the US or stay in place. “If you choose to travel internationally, your travel plans may be severely disrupted, you may be forced to remain outside of the United States for an indefinite time frame,” the advisory said.
Myself, like so may others living abroad around the world, have no home to return to.
Traveling right now is too big of a risk and the family members I would normally stay with in the states are all high risk. I will not put my family at risk so we are staying.
Our tourist visas expire May 20th.
Apparently they will not be fining those that overstay due to the pandemic. I hope this is the correct info considering this could affect me getting permanent residency in the future.
I was supposed to apply for permanent residency during our month long trip to the states in May that has now been cancelled.
Now, I will be in Mexico illegally and I am hoping that this will be overlooked.
Daily Life In Merida, Mexico During a Pandemic
Mexico is behind the states by a few weeks when it comes to this pandemic. Things are still pretty calm here.
Schools and daycares have all closed across the country.
Movie theaters have closed and restaurants have been ordered to close at 10 PM. At first this shocked me but then I recognized that Mexicans tend to eat dinner late so this actually makes sense.
The mall near my home that has the closest grocery store to me was open when I wet yesterday but we had to wash our hands twice at the door and then have our temperatures taken before entering the mall.
Certain cleaning supplies were sparce but no food was limited and there was plenty of toilet paper.
Mexico has very little numbers for this virus but I suspect that that is due to lack of testing.
Day 13 Of Physical Distancing
It has been 13 days of a mix of emotions. I’ve found myself crying uncontrollably at times, bored, anxious, grateful, scared, hopeful, angry, and even happy.
I have been given myself grace in this. I know I will rise again but for now I am loving on myself and my girls.
We are spending time together, having tea parties, watching Hulu and Netflix, swimming in the pool, and even cooking a bit.
We are so damn lucky while many are not.
Even if you can’t join us I hope you continue to practice gratitude during these times.
We are going to get through this!