Got “Cabin Fever?”

Ease Your Mind With Our Secret Newell Lodge Remedy

We exhibit all the symptoms.  Restlessness. Irritability. Loneliness. Quarantined at home. Southerners are falling prey to a tiresome malaise that is now increasingly common. My diagnosis? Cabin fever.  

The pandemic has stopped us in our tracks, and the negative effects of cabin fever are felt all over. We do the best we can with email, social media, and phones, but the reality of social isolation is sinking in.

 “I’m about to go stir-crazy!” according to one phone friend.

 Folks from the South are social creatures with warm, sweet personalities, who need to hug, shake hands, hug again…and again and again.  

“ I can’t stay cooped up in this house another minute,” a frantic mother scribed on Facebook. 

The vital family and social connections, which we cherish, are now on hold-until further notice.  

“I’m going plumb crazy,” a recent text message claimed.

Thing is, social distancing and sheltering in place run contrary to the very testament of our Southern hospitality.  As a result, we experience loneliness and an undefined restlessness.  Worse, our sense of self has been interrupted, leading to irritability.  

Take, for example, supper. We hesitate to invite friends and families for supper.  We haven’t been to Wal Mart in a month of Sundays.  We don’t stop our buggies in the center aisle at the Piggly Wiggly to hear the latest gossip.  

By chance, if we recognize our next-door neighbor, it is a miracle. Especially if she is wearing a surgical mask with gold sequins glued across the top and a pair of 70’s sunglasses that would make Elton John proud. Then, it’s nearly impossible to carry on a decent conversation from a sizable distance with your mouth and nose covered. Not to mention what it does to your lipstick!  

Good gosh, what do we sacrifice next- our manners?

Or perhaps you have a doctor’s appointment?  Be prepared.  The receptionist sits behind a plexi-glass barrier, wearing a plain Jane surgical mask.  She pulls your chart and instructs you to return to your vehicle and wait.  

“Do you prefer a call or text when the doctor is available?”

Oh, my. How in the world are we supposed to find out who else is sick, sympathize, and bless their hearts while sitting in the parking lot in 100 degree weather with the a/c running?  

Besides, the waiting room at the doctor’s office is a fountain of information on a variety of subjects. Waiting patients are a diverse group.  Their conversations are a fount of relevant engaging local news, ranging from local politics to who was pulled over for speeding by the police last night.  

Southerners are simply not equipped for staring at four walls in complete isolation from the world around them.

Whether we agree or disagree, it is crucial to the overall health and safety of the general public that we comply with COVID health and safety guidelines. We must continue to integrate Pandemic prevention into our lives for the foreseeable future. We find ourselves in need of a remedy for cabin fever? 

Our Secret Family Remedy for “Cabin Fever”

Our secret family cure is quite simple: return to nature. The great outdoors is a great healer for all sorts of malaise.

What is this healing power of nature?  Studies have shown that spending just 30 minutes a day outdoors will improve our mental and physical health and wellbeing.  What we do while we’re outside is not as important as being there.  You don’t have to walk briskly, practice yoga, or run a mile with earbuds jamming your favorite music.   You simply have to be. 

You don’t have to look far to find nature.  It’s right here in our backyards, a city park, the coast or a wooded area. You’ll find it’s possible to experience a sense of timelessness and a renewal of self, even while maintaining social distancing and sheltering in place. 

Here, in the Okefenokee region, you will find the tradition of cabin dwellings innate to the early swamp settlers. Cabins speak to us of family, self-sufficiency, and safe dwellings. Of course, here at Newell Lodge, you’ll feel all that, but we include all the modern conveniences that make a cabin feel like home. 

Five Ways To Overcome “Cabin Fever”

In south Georgia, a cabin in a grove of trees offers an opportunity to watch that wiry, little squirrel scamper from tree to tree looking for something he never seems to find. Here are some of the ways a bit of time in a rustic cabin can improve your outlook on life. You can:  

  1. Let the world unfold around you like a patchwork quilt.
    Wild Black-Eyed Susies grow along the fence line.  Appreciate their beauty by picking a bouquet to place on your table. With a little water, they’ll last for days.
  2. Sit in the front porch rocker and watch the sunrise while horses graze silently in the pasture.
    Gentle rocking and a nice hot cup of coffee brings soothing relief to frazzled thoughts. Listen to the quietness.  Feel the stillness.  The morning dew glistens on the grass as though it had been sprinkled with transparent glitter for your enjoyment.
  3. Spend time at the barn with the horses.
    Our equine friends understand our emotional state.  They make no judgments and listen without interrupting. They have no advice to give-only love and acceptance.  Who could ask for a better friend?
  4. Feed the chickens.
    The bucket is in the feed room, along with the scratch feed.  They’ll hear you coming and rush to the chicken coop door. It’s a great feeling to be appreciated, even by the chickens. It’s a simple task with great rewards.
  5. Just breathe.
    Take a leisurely stroll beneath the sprawling oak trees. Sit in the swing for a spell. Think of nothing but breathing the crisp morning air filled with nature’s sweetness.

Time spent in the great outdoors will strengthen our resolve and resilience, preparing us for what is to come.   This small dose of nature is just what the doctor ordered, and the stresses of the pandemic are held at bay. That cabin fever? Maybe it can be a good thing after all.