COVID-19 Quarantine

The past few months have been strange. I saved up for two years and went on a cruise with ten friends in mid-February. We cruised from Ft. Lauderdale to Cozumel and back and it was fun! When I got back to Florida, I spent the day in Miami with one of my cruise friends before flying home.

Then, in early March, my father passed away after being in home hospice off and on for three years. We couldn't have his memorial service because of the COVID-19 pandemic just beginning to take off in the United States. We still have no idea when we will be able to have the service.

I've been working from home for three weeks now. This is a strange period of time and I wonder how long it could go on. I live alone and I'm social distancing so I'm not seeing many people at all. I have had some conversations with neighbors, from a safe distance, when walking around outside. I've had teleconferences for work and also with friends. That's the only socialization I have had besides phone calls with some friends and family and also sitting on porches and far away from people in their homes when that was still considered to be safe. I guess I could also count socialization over Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram as well.

Now we have been advised not to socialize at all -- even if we are 6 feet apart. Today I played the daily briefing from our governor from a speaker so a neighbor could hear it from afar. I sat on my deck and she sat about 20 feet away in the common yard of our condominiums. We decided to listen to the radio together again tomorrow.

All of this has been kind of surreal. I know I am better prepared for this than a lot of people because my battle with bipolar disorder has put me in lots of isolating positions before and I have worked hard to develop coping skills. I have also developed a Wellness Recovery Action Plan that helps me plan for wellness every day. I also think my medication gives me an edge over my peers who are experiencing this level of trauma for the first time.

I am taking things one day at a time. I am happy with the way my governor is handling this pandemic. He is focusing on the health and the lives of the people in my state. I am not happy at all with the way the federal government is handling things. I try not to think about it too much.

Along with social distancing, I'm trying to stay as healthy as possible by eating well and exercising. That way, if I become ill, I will hopefully be able to get over it at home. I do fear anyone I know becoming extremely ill and possibly dying alone in a hospital. I hope it doesn't happen, but I am mentally preparing myself for that possibility. It seems like, by the end of this, most of us will probably know someone who passed away during this pandemic. Spring is usually my favorite time of the year. This year, it is pretty grim.

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