Down the Rabbit Hole with COVID19

The rabbit-hole went straight on like a tunnel for some way, and then dipped suddenly down, so suddenly that Alice had not a moment to think about stopping herself before she found herself falling down what seemed to be a very deep well.

Either the well was very deep, or she fell very slowly, for she had plenty of time as she went down to look about her, and to wonder what was going to happen next. First, she tried to look down and make out what she was coming to, but it was too dark to see anything; then she looked at the sides of the well, and noticed that they were filled with cupboards and bookshelves; here and there she saw maps and pictures hung upon pegs. She took down a jar from one of the shelves as she passed; it was labelled “ORANGE MARMALADE,” but to her great disappointment, it was empty: she did not like to drop the jar for fear of killing somebody underneath, so managed to put it into one of the cupboards as she fell past it.

“Well!” thought Alice to herself, “after such a fall as this, I shall think nothing of tumbling down stairs! How brave they’ll all think me at home! Why, I wouldn’t say anything about it, even if I fell off top of the house!” (Which was very likely true.)

–Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll

This passage / image has been playing on repeat in my mind since the start of the COVID19 “Shelter in Place” which, for me at least, began on Friday, March 13th, 2020. Coping with my mother on hospice in a nearby assisted living facility, everyday objects passed by as we plummeted into this strange place.

Every day we try to solve last week’s — yesterday’s — last hour’s problems, only to find them irrelevant in the new now.

“Down, down, down. There was nothing else to do, so Alice began talking again…. when suddenly, thump! thump! down she came upon a heap of sticks and dry leaves, and the fall was over.”

Stay well, friends, and stay grounded.

© 2020 Sarah White and Lewis Carroll, public domain.

About first person productions

My blog "True Stories Well Told" is a place for people who read and write about real life. I’ve been leading life writing groups since 2004. I teach, coach memoir writers 1:1, and help people publish and share their life stories.
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