Reusable masks, anyone?
As soon as we started to get back out into the real world, post-Covid, we began collecting reusable masks. To be honest, I had a bit of anxiety when I started thinking about wearing a mask, I tend to get a bit claustrophobic at times, and when I get anxious, it’s even worse. This is something that I noticed started happening to me after Rachael disappeared. I cannot explain why, but I don’t remember ever having that problem before. I guess traumatic events can have a myriad of effects on a person. My anxiety comes in different ways, but even the idea of being in big crowds became tougher to navigate, the thought of anything, including water, over my face suffocated me. I work through it, with help from my counsellor, but when the masks started becoming a thing, I was not into it.
Then, I had a specialist appointment rescheduled for early July to test me for various allergens. The appointment had been scheduled for April, and since I didn’t want to postpone it again after a scary reaction to something I suspected to be hazelnuts, I kept the appointment and donned a mask.
A pretty, reusable one.
When I got to my appointment and put it on, I happily found that I was okay. It could have been because of the nature of my need to wear one, or the fact that I’d had so long to build myself up to wearing one. It’s not my favourite thing—same as everyone else—but my world has opened up since getting used to wearing a face-covering. I’ve started doing some of the shopping for our house again, and get out by myself sometimes. It’s been great!
[Note: It turns out that I am allergic to hazelnuts, so no more Nutella or Ferraro Rocher for me! Since nuts can cause an anaphylactic reaction, I now carry an epi-pen. I wouldn’t worry about it too much, except that I had a reaction and I don’t remember eating hazelnuts! It was kind of scary and I’d rather be safe than sorry. So, next time you make me dessert, skip the hazelnuts please!]
Given that there’s honestly not an end in sight for this mask-wearing, social-distancing era of our lives, I thought I’d share a few of the reusable masks that we’ve been using.
I'm smiling, I swear!
The first reusable mask I ordered was from a lady that I found in Port Moody, care of a local Facebook discussion group. She had great patterns to choose from and made kids’ sizes as well. They were reasonable priced and I’m really happy that we went with a local seamstress for our first masks. However, I find that the metal piece she used for over the nose gets displaced in the washing machine … but that’s my only complaint! I have a pretty green mask and the kids have Batman and Star Wars ... if you had to guess, which would you say Brad matched? If you guessed Star Wars, you would be absolutely correct.
Second, on the recommendation of a good friend, I ordered some through the Vancouver Whitecaps/Aquarium, that help raise funds for the aquarium’s Ocean Wise Initiative. They are comfortable over the ears, super soft and I haven’t had any trouble wearing them at all! Other than the time I took Brad’s large size and it basically covered my entire face. 🙂
Finally, I caved into the influencer world and ordered a matching scrunchie and mask set from ex-bachelorette Kaitlin Bristowe’s company, Dew Edit. Read about my adventure at her Off the Vine live podcast taping here.
Sadly, my Dew mask and scrunch are not here yet, and I don’t anticipate them getting here any time soon given the rate of delivery for items shipping from the US. But I’m excited about the pale grey mask with adjustable straps behind the ears, and the matching scrunchie … though I won’t necessarily wear them together. I’ve never particularly liked matching too much.
I’m happy that we’re able to do our part and wear reusable masks. We throw them into the wash every time we get home after use, and have taken to keeping them in our vehicle so that we have them with us wherever we go. I prefer to try and wear my contacts, but we did receive some de-fogging wipes from the optometrist that help in a pinch. Anyone with glasses will tell you that the hot-breath fogging up your glasses problem is real.
Hope you’re all staying safe out there! It's nice to be able to do something for the environment when things like reusable produce bags and coffee mugs are not accepted right now. At least it's something!
Wear your mask,