Pandemic Lockdown Day 8: 2 April 2020

Last night, I had a fitful sleep again. Too hot. Too full of pain. Too uncomfortable. Too many bizarre dreams. Nothing I could do could give me a good night’s sleep.

My anxiety was so bad yesterday, triggered by everything including counseling, that I had very bad digestive issues that kept me up late. Surely that didn’t help things.

This morning, I really felt like avoiding everyone, and even though there is only my husband, our cat, and me in the house, I managed to avoid everyone. I worked. A lot. It helps keep my mind off the hundred thousand or hundreds of thousands that will die in America due to COVID-19 and an inept administration who refused to act because there’s an idiot at the helm. I am very angry, and very upset, and very frustrated with the situation there. Had Hillary Clinton won, or if there hadn’t been an absolute moron whose only goal seems to be to try to erase the legacy of the intelligent black man who held the office before him no matter what the cost, the USA would not be in this predicament because intelligence, science, and a solid group of knowledgable advisors would have curtailed this pandemic months before it happened.

I digress. However, my anger, my sadness, my frustration, my worry, and so on are legitimate feelings and should be acknowledged as such.

I had a nice conversation with the Principal at The Place Where I Work this morning. It was over 20 minutes long, and we got a lot worked out, which was great. Despite me feeling very anti-social, and actually wanting to end the conversation about 15 minutes earlier than we did due to my anti-socialness, I felt it was productive.

A confession: I’ve been avoiding people in my life the last few days. I can’t face it. I can’t face the possibility of people I love getting very sick, or dying, or even burdening them with my possible illness or death. It seems strange, but I seem to distance myself at times like these when I really need to talk about how I feel.

I did spend a bit of time texting with my brother Brian. I was honest with him in some things, and that felt good. It’s nice to have someone in my life I feel I can talk about anything with, without judgement and without the fear of some sort of reprisal for being honest, and Brian is one of those people. He always has been, and he always will be.

This evening, I fell into a stupor. I even got to the point where my mind kept repeating to myself: I’m never going to see my friends and family in the States again. I don’t want to die alone, so far away from everyone else. I know this is possibly (and probably) an irrational fear, but in these days of COVID-19, where seemingly healthy young 20 year olds are dropping dead from the virus, all bets are off.

The other issue — if and when a vaccine will come — is also heart-wrenching. 12 months at a very optimistic minimum, but many sources saying it could be years, pushes me into darker spaces.

Before this all happened, I could hop on a plane in Auckland and arrive in Chicago 16 hours later. It became a miracle of modern aviation, and I felt very much closer to home.

It’s all gone. I read Air New Zealand is operating at over 90% less domestically in New Zealand right now. Most of their international routes have been cut, including Auckland to Chicago. If I needed to get back home, for whatever reason, I might be able to access the only route back — Auckland to Los Angeles — and then have to find my way back to Chicago from there. A very sobering change in accessibility, seemingly overnight.

So I feel stuck. Limited movement, limited ability to do much of anything.

And an extremely uncertain future. Before this all happened, I felt if I needed a slight or radical change, it could happen. Now? Now I feel super trapped.

There are rumblings from certain quarters that lots of vaccines are being tested, and that antibody treatments (that only last a month or 2) could be available soon to protect the most vulnerable of us (including me), and that gives a glimmer of hope.

But darker forces also come into play and whisper to me, “You’ll die alone. You’ll have no funeral. And you’ll remain alone throughout eternity.”

Uncertain times will do that to you, I guess. And I hope I’m wrong. The optimist in me is trying to convince me that that won’t happen to me.

We will see.

Right now, all I can do and all I can control is how safe I can be, how vigilant I can be, and how much I can comply with staying home and isolated.

I sure as fuck hope everyone else in New Zealand gets the message and stays the fuck home so we can at least end this thing here in our country until a vaccine or cure can be found.