Keeping in Touch With Angie


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Keeping in Touch With Angie

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COVID-19 has affected several of my relationships and how I have stayed in contact with friends. I wanted to talk about how COVID-19 has changed my interactions with one of my friends, Angie. I have known Angie for several years but we became really close friends when we attended the same church congregation in Provo, Utah from 2015-2016. When I graduated from school in Spring 2018, I moved away from Provo for an internship and I haven’t lived in Provo since. Angie also graduated around the same time and she continued to work in the same area.

Normally, Angie and I will visit one another every other month and get lunch or I would spend the weekend with her at her apartment. The last time I was with Angie before COVID-19 lockdown began was in February. I was staying with her for a weekend in Provo, Utah for a wedding. On February 7, we got Korean BBQ bowls and went to an art museum. The next morning we woke up early and got kolaches. And I was thinking we’d get together soon in another month or so.

For Angie’s birthday that same month, I sent her a sun hat because we made plans with our other two friends to go to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina in June. But with the news of the onset of COVID-19 a few weeks later, we ended up canceling those plans.

After a FaceTime call in April, we both figured out that we needed ways to stay connected while social-distancing safely. However, we didn’t have any new things to report because we were social-distancing. So we started our audiobook club to give ourselves something to chat about. So far we have listened and discussed The Only Plane in the Sky: An Oral History of 9/11, I Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban, and White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism. We are currently listening to Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood. Neither of us remembered who suggested our book club, but I’m glad we have stayed connected through it. Both Angie and I have enjoyed each of these books. They have made us much more knowledgeable about the world around us and I like discussing them with Angie. My favorite book we read together was White Fragility. We read it in response to the death of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. As white women, we realized we needed to better educate ourselves. We had a tough conversation, but I’m glad I had it with Angie who is incredibly compassionate and thoughtful.

Besides our book club, we have had video chats with some other friends and we’ve texted one another. I finally saw Angie in person while she was passing through where I lived. We cautiously sat outside 6 feet apart and ate popsicles on my grass lawn. And I met her boyfriend for the first time!

The pandemic has changed how I connect with my friends. I rely much more on technology and scheduled calls. I have learned to cut myself and others some slack for this situation because there is so much more social friction than before. Weirdly enough,in some ways it has helped with my social anxiety because I don’t feel FOMO (a.k.a. The “fear of missing out”). We’re all in the same crappy boat. The pandemic has also helped me think about why certain people are my friends. Now it’s less about proximity or someone’s availability but more so about someone’s loyalty, kind heart, or strong values.
One photo (taken by my friend) and a photo and video (taken by me)

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#CoverYourFangs>Keeping in Touch
#CoverYourFangs>Finding New Ways to Cope

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This item was submitted on October 5, 2020 by Carly Bagley using the form “Share Your Story” on the site “A Journal of the Plague Year”:

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