Self Reflection on Isolation
The onset of the Covid-19 virus and its ensuing ramifications have been nothing short of incredible. How one could possibly predict the panic buying of products such as toilet paper is being discussed globally and will be up for analysis for years to come. The multitude of news outlets available to most of us has also contributed to the blame, uncertainty and misinformation surrounding the outbreak. As of writing, many countries are preparing for total lock-downs and talking huge casualties if the 3.5% mortality rate remains constant. Yet, the lessons from South Korea and China appear to be either too hard for many countries to implement or, even worse, there is a lack of will by politicians.
There are obviously still wide ranging economic and social issues that are yet to be realized as we all learn what to do and gain the best advice available. However, the biggest surprise I have found is in my own feelings towards the pandemic and how it has made me be reflective on my own situation. Don’t misunderstand my intent here. I am not posturing from a selfish position and that it is all about me. I haven’t taken part in any stockpiling or panic buying at all. It is more about how I, someone living alone feel about the changing situation.
During times of uncertainty, we like to discuss what is happening, share thoughts and opinions or just discuss good ideas. Living alone means that I have a lot of hours between my job on my own with nobody to share my concerns with. Social isolating also means that the opportunities to catch up with friends is getting more difficult also. Yes, I have a phone and can get in touch with people, but this is not the same. We are social creatures and technology is a form of isolation also.
This isolation has increased a level of concern in me that was unexpected. I am usually very good at monitoring my own feelings and behavior but have felt a level of uncertainty creeping in as thoughts about the immediate future become less certain. Not that this virus is being seen as existential to the species, but it is appearing to be a dangerous game of Russian roulette, particular for those over 60. Add the social disruption and things get amplified further. I am now more conscious of what living alone means as I am unable to control many of the everyday tasks, I took for granted. Shopping is just one. I have limited ability, as may workers do, to get to the shops other than when they are full of madness. Part of me knows they will calm down, but I can’t possibly know when.
It feels I am sinking in quicksand as my previous isolation is being compounded even further. I wonder how others are feeling about this situation, particularly the elderly who are also at an increased health risk. For all our sake, I hope this passes us by and we have grossly overreacted in good judgement. Self-reflection is not a bad thing, but it does mean we need to stay connected through these current times.