COVID-19: Personal and Community Impacts

With the coronavirus pandemic continuing to spread around the world, we are getting more information and perspective about the severity of the problem and what it will take to resolve it. In this episode, Eric shares his own experience – his situation, his feelings about the outbreak, his relationship with dance – and he shares his own reflections on how this may affect our dance community. He talks about a timeline for a return to social dancing and to weekend events (warning: it isn’t optimistic), and he discusses the changes he hopes we will see in our community moving forward. Then he sits down with friend of the show Tom Paderna to hear his feelings and experience, and his thoughts on how this will affect local and regional dancing in the short- and long-term. He discusses the risks and personal considerations of social dancing, and reflects on how our community has dealt with situations like 9/11 and the economic recession of 2008. Tom brings his perspective as a dancer and as a psychologist, looking at how this situation will affect us all as fellow human beings and as a community. And he leaves us all with a message of hope while we continue to live through this public health crisis.

The 4 plans to end social distancing, explained (Vox)


  1. Hey Eric and Tom
    Great interview
    By the sounds of both your voices , I can relate .
    Such a roller coaster of thought processes since January.
    For me … uh oh … I saw how fast it spread in China and did not have a good feel about this one .. it wasn’t the same as the others viruses we’ve seen.
    Then when people were cleared to fly from Wuhan back home … first case to USA 30 year old make , healthy , no symptoms, no fever , flew back to Seattle .. got sick tested positive for Covid 19
    Another early case 60 year old woman in Detroit .. same scenario .. fly’s back … shows symptoms within a few days
    Another woman .. same thing … her husband who stayed in USA got sick with it 3 days later
    All this on news and in paper and on CDC website
    … red flag alarms going off for me … this is WELL people without symptoms passing this on !!
    I had just got back from a mission trip to Jamaica .. no cases there … but I was on a cross country plane ride packed with people up and back ..
    I didn’t go dancing … just didn’t feel right .. didn’t go to next gen dance … didn’t feel right
    I was concerned about all of us ,but also what if I was the one who passed it on ??
    I have not gotten sick with this so far.
    Cancelled my trip to Philippines – was going to be gone a month .. concerned I wouldn’t be able to get back home … sure enough .. they are on lockdown including flights.
    I was a little shell shocked at beginning … I had a feeling it was goin to be bad … didn’t have a concept as to HOW bad … stayed in sweats .. leggings .. didn’t shower everyday like usual …the news changed every day sometimes every hour .. made your head spin.
    So I made a list of projects I could work on … make this a positive experience as much as I can ..
    Took Roberts on line intensives four Sunday’s in a row ..
    Took miles and tessas week long classes.
    Have my notes and then selected sheets for drills ..
    This is going to be great !!
    Couldn’t do it .. I was like you Eric … I had the game plan .. I’d stare at my dance shoes .. look at my notes … and my brian went nah .. I think I’ll read.
    This went on for three days !!
    I’m saying to myself “ what is wrong with me ??
    C’mon Kathryn .. you can do this girl .. let’s go …
    same thing .. wouldn’t do it ..
    I went of a walk and had my first AHA moment ..
    My Brain said …I want a break .. so want to do what I know .. and like a movie I saw since January all of February and now into March .. I have been leading new info , processing it , applying it .. and redoing and fine tuning .. all with situations NOT related to covid 19-
    Then two situations popped up in middle of shut down that had to be addressed and were time sensitive .. add Covid .. change change change ..
    My Brain was done … it could handle new info and things that need to be done .. but fun things like bible study homework , dance classes , leading how to use instapot .. my brain went NO .
    So that’s what that was !!
    I thanked my body for letting me know what it wanted .. and for two weeks I only did what I know .. praying , reading , walking , biking , yoga , stretching , watching movies , putzing in the yard ..
    Second AHA moment ..
    I had been repeating over and over
    “ what is wrong with me ??
    It’s just not like me to not be doing something positive
    During Courtney’s yoga class .
    The thought came to me “ there is nothing worn with you .. instead .. what is going on right now?”
    That’s it !
    I had been talking negatively to myself ..
    It was a form of self abuse in a way ..
    The second question is a much nicer and kinder way to talk ..
    and Courtney’s class is called “ self care Sunday “!
    I let her know about this BTW.
    So I changed how I speak to myself
    I and back to being able to do new things
    I miss dancing so much .. I miss all the social aspects
    It’s amazing how much we interact even in little get togethers… you don’t realize how much we connect until it’s gone .. or at least very limited
    I am making more phone calls .. as well as text and FB
    And messaging .. thanks goodness for social media !
    But I like the sound of someone’s voice.
    I am checking on neighbors and elder friends.. working with friend to get her face shields and masks out ..
    Kind of in a wait and see ride it out mental status right now .
    I’ve accepted Christ as my Saviour .. He says He will come live in you and you in Him when you do that ..
    So I am not afraid and never feel lonely ..
    He is with me and has me covered in all things .
    I’m trusting Him in and with all of this .
    He is already get rid of some negative responses in me that I have been working on for years !
    I’m actually a little calmer and more peaceful in general ..
    A friend of mine commented on it last week .
    I believe those that can adapt to this will do the best .
    There is survival of the fittest .. those that are the strongest and healthiest .. but I see people emotionally and mentally not doing well with this .. in denial .. want their rights to go and do what they want .. I see that as I want what I want and I’m not or cannot change so dont ask me to .. In this case it will be about adapting to a long term change … and I don’t think it will go well for them . Already anxiety is increasing from what news and what Tom said
    How will this affect my dancing ?
    I think I will go out in small group to start.
    Maybe my home ?
    Local dance at some point ..
    Will not be going to convention until October ?
    I plan on going back East to see my family this summer like I always do ..
    I want to see them first .. not go to a convention and then go see them the following week .. not sure what will be happening by then and I don’t want to be the one to bring something to them if there is a second wave of this.
    I am willing to delay gratification and be smart about this .. patient …let it play out and do my part .
    I already feeling my attitude towards the dance change ..
    I feel more free .. focusing on Footwork and how my body moves has been amazing .. I feel like I’m going back to basics and how come I love dance .. and it started with me loving to move my body to music .. then I felI love with partner dancing ..
    One of my goals is for my dancing and connection to music and partner be better than when Covoid hit .
    Seems crazy that it would happen with solo drills .. but who knows ?? Maybe that’s what NEEDS to happen ..
    So I am taking and advantage of this time to do that .
    Hugs .. supposedly as humans we need 10 hugs a day ?
    I am a hugger .. and that is the one thing I really miss with all this .. haven’t figured out how to fill that .. so for now it is voice versus touch.. so I call a lot of people !!
    Can’t wait to talk , hug , see you !
    Keep doing what you are doing and totally get how come you weren’t able to actually put it out there for awhile
    Stay safe .. the world .. my world.. needs you !
    Love to you ❤️

  2. I agree with all that you stated about the types of changes we will see, and I definitely expect a slow return to normal dance scenes as there is much fear among us. I also think some will reconsider their career choices and others will discover the need to finance emergency savings.

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