“How’s Marcus coping with all of this?” A common question from friends, family, coworkers and colleagues.

First off, thanks for asking. We know everyone’s challenges are particularly unique at the moment. And, when possible, considering the needs and wellbeing of others may help get this human race through to the other side. Of course, taking care looks quite different now than even a year ago, but here we are.

Marcus has stayed home from everything except medical necessities for several months now. Because, what has been seen so far is, generally speaking, people with Ds have had a far rougher “go” with COVID. So we’re limiting the risk. We explained these risks in short detail here in “Why Marcus is getting his hair cut at home.”

One concern folks have is for his social well-being. Because many see Marcus as a very social guy, especially those having experienced his exuberant love for a good party or his enthusiastic greetings which light up any room. He does enjoy learning, travel, and working, for sure. However, he is also, by nature, an introvert, so the alone time mixed with occasional online social activities suits him fine.

That said, in this time of limited exposure, the most accurate answer to “How Marcus is coping” is:

“Better than anyone. Seriously, any one. On the planet.”

Marcus is not only coping, but thriving, and (as usual) we can all learn from him.

Take this morning as an example. With my behavior as contrast.

Sent to me from my brother. It’s hard to see the punchline, which is “Covid” saying, “Damn Bitch, you live like this?” Ha! So…that.

Me: Last night I retreated early to the bedroom because of an unpleasant collision of fatigue and sensory over stimulation resulting from a simple combination of TV, family chatter, and my own loud brain overwhelming me. Then, in the middle of the night I woke from anxiety driven restlessness of the missed items on my to-do and concerns for what’s next. I talked myself back to sleep and continued to sleep right past my morning alarm. Neat. 

I have plenty of work-work to do, however being Sat, I decided to stall. I threw on sweatpants, made coffee, and moved from bed to the couch. I read a bit and made an impossibly long to-do list for the weekend.

While I proceeded with these avoidance tactics, Marcus hummed his way downstairs.

Marcus: First he brightly chatted with me about a new character he’s created. Then he began his morning routine.

From the family room I could hear his long and happy song while he washed his hands. I’m confident he thoroughly soaped and rinsed his fingers, palm to wrist, as we practiced earlier this year. His song was loud and bright, with no hint of drudgery or fear.

Then he made his breakfast. A breakfast comprised of leftover frozen pizza (which is surely part of his good mood), hummus, and a cold water.

He told me more of his ideas and reminded me that we should arrange a video call with Matt Groening to ask about Marcus voicing as a guest on The Simpsons (with Marcus’ own storyline idea, of course), and also we need to talk to FOX production studios about “The Marcus and Mardra Show.”

I told him the next time I talk to Matt G, I’ll bring it up. And that maybe later today we can do a short video for YouTube, as a start you know, before FOX.

He replied, “Yes.”

Then he headed upstairs with his busy brain. No doubt to sit at his desk and continue drawing and creating.


Marcus, and adult with Down syndrome, sitting and smiling beside a desk with a notebook and pencil

Does he “miss” anything in this time of “lock down?” Well sure, of course he does. He misses going to the bar, so thinks we should build one at home. He’s a problem solver, you know.

He misses live theatre and thinks they (the great They) should show more on TV (like Hamilton on Disney+) or on DVD. Also, he’d like more local or national live streaming shows. He’s right of course.

When the talk of NYC and other trips or events come up, he says, “After the sick people are better.” And he’s ready to wear a mask, if there comes a time when there are safer interim steps.

A few weeks ago, I reminded readers in the great ether of Marcus’ advice to himself and others, especially “Be brave.” (You can read his complete advice in: “Marcus, Aristotle, and Douglas Adams Advice“)

This morning, Marcus, by way of example, reminded me of these three lessons:

  1. Rejoice and be grateful(Pizza for breakfast! Joyful songs with plenty of running water and soap to help us stay healthy.)
  2. Be patient. (We can, in fact, wait.)
  3. Keep creating. (‘Nuff said.)