Andy and I have been practicing social distancing since last Friday afternoon. I spent Friday morning getting some groceries before coming home and settling in for an undetermined amount of time.
Since then, we’ve left the premises only a few times — to pick up deliveries from my parents’ house (they left our things in the garage so we didn’t come into contact with them); we’ve taken the dogs outside to play and for a couple of walks; and we took a trip to the ER and pharmacy.
After getting back from NYC, I developed a sore throat, cough, and tightness in my chest/shortness of breath. Our visit to the ER was unexpected, but they checked to make sure I didn’t have pneumonia. X-ray came back clear!
The progression of these symptoms and the advice of a nurse prompted my choice to isolate, though I would have eventually done so anyway.
Outside of these few moments, we haven’t left and we haven’t seen anyone. But we’ve found ways of entertaining ourselves anyway.
*We played an intense game of “The Floor is Lava” that resulted in only minor injuries.
*We have FaceTimed with my parents.
*I have taken far too many pictures of our pets.
*We’ve watched movies and shows on Netflix and Hulu.
*We’ve been entertained by the birds and squirrels outside.
*We broke out some of our old gaming systems.
*We’ve been cooking a lot of food (not much of a choice when you can’t go out, but we enjoy cooking together anyway).
I am thankfully still able to work from home, though I do have more free time than normal. It still feels somewhat productive to get a few hours of work in, with the rest of the day free to do whatever we want.
Overall, it hasn’t been too much different than the days I work from home during the week already (except for that it has been 5 days straight with no immediate end in sight).
Being in quarantine obviously affects everyone differently. Andy is a much more social person than I am, and I expect that he’ll feel the effects of isolation before I do. I am content to read and cook and hang out with the dogs and water the plants and watch the animals outside our window.
But I will say, I’ve noticed a few things since being disconnected…
- I miss seeing people outside my home, including all the wonderful people I work with. I don’t think I would already be feeling this is there was a clear end in sight, since I don’t feel this way on vacation.
- Neighbors that we’ve never talked to say hello from their decks when we walk by. They must also be feeling some kind of disconnection.
- It’s easy to believe the world is absent of any activity when you no longer see it. You begin to assume all people must also be in their homes, but when you leave yours, you see the world hasn’t stopped.
As a writer, it is interesting to see and feel these things. It surprises me that it’s already happening after only a few days. Most of us need human interaction and hope, which explains why Italians are singing from their porches and people are having group chats on Skype.
Share your story in the comments! What activities are you doing during social distancing?
And just for fun, here’s something to bring us all a little more enjoyment: