My friend John Palmer has written a post about “Covid19 Despondency.” It is well worth a read and he outlines many of the concerns I have.
I worry about and for everyone. I see no way out of this for at least a few months, and meanwhile so many people will have been pushed to the edge. I try to control my despondency by thought-blocking and thinking about positive things, but every once it awhile it hits.
Same here. I am in my 50s and Significant Other is older (he would kill me if I wrote his age), so we don’t feel immortal or immune, by any stretch. John writes that he and his wife have become borderline paranoid, and I fear I have, as well. I do go out – to walk and shop (though I keep the latter to a minimum) – and I have noticed that I hold my breath if people are walking within, say, three metres of me. Like everyone else, I wash my hands like a fiend, carry sanitizer and disposable gloves, attempt to not touch my face (not so easy, folks, especially given my seasonal allergies) and try to cover my mouth and nose with a scarf if I am in a store.
I do my best to get my 10,000 steps in each day – not so easy – but thanks to my many years of tending feral cat colonies in this city I do know a lot of laneways and backstreets that are unpopulated by humans (but for the odd drug dealer or purchaser). So that has come in handy. I am also attempting to finish writing projects that are long overdue, but I find it difficult to focus and really have to fight to not lapse into procrastination. A commenter on John’s post said she found it hard to get motivated and I feel the same way.
Since I am extremely introverted, I don’t really miss other humans that much, with the exception of some friends and family (it would have been nice to have been able to visit Significant Other’s family for Easter). It is a delight to not take the TTC and, above all, to not spend. It reminds me a bit of when I went to Italy for three months and only brought a carry-on bag. I discovered just how little one needs. Fittingly, I am MarieKondoing the heck out of my clothes. When this is over (will it ever truly be over?) and places like the Salvation Army are accepting donations again, they will be thrilled with my haul.
What I do miss: my students and colleagues at my day job; the possibility of travel (I had two trips cancelled in March/April – one for pleasure, one for business); my gym; not crossing the street or walking in the middle of the road when I see another human approaching; going to a park and taking photos of birds, squirrels and such (in theory, one can still do that, but parks tend to be busy these days); sitting in a nice coffee shop with a latte and a vegan treat, either by myself or with a friend or my honeybunch. Oh yes, this can be done at home, but going out to a nice spot can provide uplift. Plus, then you don’t have to do dishes.
Looking at the reasons to be grateful: I have a roof over my head; I am with someone I love and not just love but with whom I get along and with whom I feel safe. I can’t help but thinking not only about adults in violent homes who now cannot get out, but about children in a similar spot. When I was a kid, school was my respite. I had a terrible homelife. What of the kids right now who can’t escape, even for a few hours?
More reasons to be grateful: we live in a time/place where delivery is possible; I am baking a lot; we have wine; the wonderful Italian series “My Brilliant Friend/L’Amica Geniale” is on HBO into May; the new season of “Fauda” starts this week.
I hope you, dear readers, are all (relatively) well and finding positives in this odd new world.