It’s Monday. Again. And it feels like a Monday. But every day feels like a Monday at the moment. It isn’t like my life varies dramatically from day to day. I spend a lot of time on Instagram, I walk back and forth to my kitchen and I binge on the news way more than I should. The highlight of my Monday (and my week) is ordering bagels right at noon because they sell out by 12:06. I have a weekly reminder on my calendar so I don’t forget. In between those few things, I do work, I clean and I avoid people.
Avoid people? Wait, what? It is a pandemic. We are sheltering in place. Where are all the people? Ummm…they are everywhere. And they aren’t supposed to be. It is like they have a homing beacon that brings them out as soon as the weather is nice. Granted, I am not in Florida so I don’t have to worry about miles of beaches and thousands of people but I am in Seattle where even slightly decent weather means EVERYONE is outside. And now you might be asking, “Why are you outside? You don’t even like people or the outside and isn’t that a bit like the pot calling the kettle black?” Like everyone else, I am going crazy being in my house. I can’t spend another minute with myself or by myself and I need a change of scenery. However, because I am so anxious and guilt-ridden about other people and potentially infecting everyone, leaving the house is almost worse than being inside it. I went for a walk the other day and didn’t bring my mask and felt shame like I have never felt shame before. I wasn’t expecting to see anyone! I thought if people were out they wouldn’t be in my neighborhood. And to top it all off, I have been forced to do virtual workouts. I know! I don’t even like working out when we aren’t in the middle of a pandemic! Let’s be clear, it isn’t like I am actually getting fit, the trips to the fridge (and the bagel orders) counteract that. The reality is that walking outside causes more stress than it should. Going for walks used to be something I did to avoid exercise while getting exercise. Don’t ask me how that works but it does, in my head… Now I pray that I don’t see anyone else so I can feel shitty about the world while I am outside and in my head rather than feeling shitty about it inside my house and in my head. Neither of which are great options.
And the grass is always greener, isn’t it? I am sure that people look at me and think that it must be so peaceful because I just have me (and two kittens) and that I don’t have to worry about kids and managing whatever other stress comes with a family. But all the same, it sucks. I am so lonely. I miss my friends. I miss my parents. I miss leaving the house to go on a random errand (Target) that I don’t really need to do but do anyway because I can. Every day, I sit at home and I feel like I am wasting time, that it is running out. I was supposed to have made a huge career change by now. I was going to move somewhere new. I was going to have direction in my life. I was going to start dating. Yeah, right. Which of those statements is a lie? Look, I know I am lucky. I am healthy. I can pay my bills. I have a roof overr my head. I know where my next meal is coming from (bagels). Those aren’t guarantees for a lot of people. However, it doesn’t stop the voices in my head telling me that I am alone and not making the sort of impact on the world that I should. I am not good at sitting still and waiting for the world around me to get back to some semblance of normality. I need to feel like I am doing something. The concept of a new normal doesn’t work well for a control freak like me. Not to mention I broke out in hives from the stress of it all. Who knew that my body would revolt against me as well? And of course I immediately looked up skin symptoms for Covid-19.
Here’s to being self-indulgent and having a mid-life crisis during a pandemic. How else can I make it all about me? Stay safe, stay healthy and stay as sane as you possibly can. It is never too early for chocolate or baked goods.