The privilege of being a girl boss in quarantine

Last year, I thought I had survived a severe crisis when I became single for the first time since the Obama administration. My breakup forced me to make difficult changes to my life that I never saw coming, like creating a new password for my Seamless account. I dealt with surges of hopelessness and confusion, similar to when I was no longer able to be on my parents’ health insurance plan. It was a time of hardship and pain, but luckily those emotions enabled me to abstain from carbs. Increasing the dosages on my prescription pills to help with my “mood” further assisted in toning my mid section. I was able to enjoy wearing crop tops and I appeared fun on instagram. Today, I — along with the rest of the world, now find myself in a far more painful experience, and without the luxury of my local hip-hop hot yoga studio being open.

I’m currently quarantined in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic. After being furloughed from my job, I now spend each morning saying to myself, “ I think I need to download a different web browser to view this correctly,” while exploring the New York State unemployment website. I’m adjusting to the new normal of leaving my brownstone apartment in a face mask, preventing others from seeing the shade of my lipstick. It’s always disappointing to cover up my mouth because a fun lip color is part of my signature look. Everyday feels like an identity crisis. I purchased a patterned romper online at an attempt at my former life, but deep in my heart I knew I would probably continue wearing leggings or yoga pants daily given the environment.

When I venture outside for my daily nonfat iced latte and stretch session in Domino Park, the streets are empty and the landscape is unfamiliar. Instead of Ubers and Lyfts zooming past, it’s people carrying their SweetGreen salad takeout home on foot. One horrific change that’s been hard to ignore, besides Sephora closing, has been the wait to enter Whole Foods. Upon my first grocery visit during quarantine, I saw throngs of attractive people lining up on the sidewalk of Bedford Avenue and I was relieved. I thought The Weeknd was having a special benefit performance for people in Williamsburg affected by the virus. I was wrong. The line was not exclusive, it was one in and one out entry into Whole Foods, with a line wrapped around the block. Sadly, I am no longer able to shop at the store due to my personal belief of not waiting in lines. I even refused to wait in line at The Standard Hotel for my best friend’s bachelorette party.

In addition to my neighborhood, my personal habits have undergone dramatic changes. Instead of paying for weekly massages, I now use a $16 mint body wash that provides instant stimulation for my muscles and other areas of the body. It feels good. I also shave my inside parts like it’s Spring Break in Myrtle Beach to avoid acceptance of the global situation at hand. Long gone are the days of getting fingered at a booth inside LA Burrito, a fast casual Mexican restaurant. Now for excitement I reply to instagram stories of acquaintances or masturbate to Father John Misty songs while I’m on hold with my internet provider to troubleshoot connectivity issues. If I’m really feeling kinky, I’ll fantasize about myself successfully filing for unemployment.

At my lowest point in quarantine, when I thought the world was ending, I used my Seamless account to have Burger King delivered, since I had never tried a whopper. It arrived cold, soggy and was underwhelming. I imagine it would have been more enjoyable if I had the munchies, a fun side effect of using marijuana. I regrettably chose the wrong time to quit smoking weed, gateway drugs sound appealing during a global pandemic. However, it’s exhausting being reminded of my ex every time I smell or pay for weed. Especially after being triggered up top placing and paying for my seamless order. I can’t really name any positives from choosing to remain substance free during quarantine, aside from being able to seperate the television series, “West World” from my own reality.

This challenging time has brought forth some personal accomplishments. I inflated a workout stability ball by myself. I converted my makeup vanity to a writing desk and I’ve used it for actual writing purposes. I also had a really successful tweet. Without having any time restrictions or commitments, I was able to determine the approximate length of time it takes me to get ready, which totals at 100 minutes. I made a fear based purchase at the start of quarantine of a boxed collection of CBD body oils. I figured this would provide some relaxation in a time of stressful circumstances. After showering, it has become a daily ritual to douse my entire body in CBD oil while playing songs that incorporate the ukulele on Amazon Music. It’s the part of my day I look forward to the most.

I don’t know what the future holds, and due to only essential businesses being open, I can’t have my tarot cards read. While it’s hard not having access to acupuncture, salons, and sound baths, I am learning that the real self care starts from within. During this virus, we’re all in this together, but also alone. While I can’t predict what happens next in life, the only thing that is for certain is that I’m slowly but surely becoming a Girl Boss. **

Heather Ann Harrison is a southern bred comedian/actor/writer trained at the Annoyance theater NYC originally from Raleigh, North Carolina