Privilege Disclaimer: Yes. I say all of this as a person able to work from home. The concerns listed are mine alone and do not warrant government intervention. I maintain I am allowed a moany moan on a little blog. I hope it is relatable and entertaining.
I stopped writing an isolation diary blog thing as soon as I realised everyone was doing it. I basically just started reading everyone elses and forgot to write my own. I am sorry. This is the last one I wrote. I dusted it off, cleaned it up and will now share it with you because you deserve content. And I promised I would write more content.
I need you to cast your mind back to a few months ago. Mid-lockdown, before things eased and definitely before the new Nando’s tier system swept the UK. So at this point we’ve spent enough time at home for the new normal to sink in but not enough time to truly feel the fatigue.
This is a story from back then.
*dreamy bloopy jangly flashback music*
I got out of bed the other day and my right shoulder stayed behind. The sensation was intense. And burning. I was ready to dismiss it as yet another sign of my ageing body. At the sink, I realised that I couldn’t lift my toothbrush unless I hunched my shoulder all the way up to my ear. So there, in full Igor stance, I stood brushing my teeth and a thought occurred.
This doesn’t seem normal.
5 intense minutes of scrolling research later, I realised I had a horrible torn muscle and would definitely need surgery.
I informed my husband. His face went through a few expressions…disbelief, mirth, judgement, contemplation and finally, reluctantly, concern. I have noted this betrayal for future reference.
“It sounds more like a sprain.”
Ooooh so suddenly you’re a doctor. I didn’t know you were a dooooooc-tor!
“Okay, you should call the GP. I don’t know much about it.”
So I called the GP.
“Okay based on what you’ve told me it seems like a mild shoulder impingement. I’ll send you some exercises to do at home and you can pick up some painkillers at the pharmacy in an hour.”
Ah… yes, as I thought I surg- wait what? No surgery? hm. So you’re a dooooc-tor are you?!
“Um…yes? No, I don’t think surgery is necessary.”
I thanked him with dignity.
I did the exercises like a fool.
But the pharmacy was in the wild outdoors. A place I have not been to in many a week. I simply don’t go out anymore. Remember when I tried? Unless it’s to shop, I stay home and watch Kim’s Convenience – the new binge. I do want a return to normalcy… I also kinda don’t.
I have become soft and fragile. The air out there makes me sniffle and the temperature fluctuates and there are people. Three days after the GP told me to go to the pharmacy my shoulder still hurts but my soul hurts more. And I feel guilty. Some poor Essential Pharmacy Worker selected my painkillers, put them in a paper bag and put that bag on a shelf. My name is on it. It’s waiting for me.
I didn’t realise how bad things had gotten. I wrote about how the Quarantine had changed us but I did not include this weird anxiety about the outside world. I have become full hermit. I’m like that newly adopted cat that runs under the sofa and stares at you until you slowly back out of the room.
But I did it.
I avoided people like…well like the plague actually. Hehehe… humour. This is why you come here folks. That wit.
I silently judged people as I walked. More than usual. I projected my own insecurities on every minute hand movement they made… touching masks, despicable. Touching a door handle, egregious! Shakings hands?! See thesararus for more words dagnabbit!
I made a big show of keeping my distance, desperately seeking validation from a wider society I no longer felt connected to. Look at me… 2 metre (6 feet) distance? Watch me rock 2.5 metres (add conversion here or the joke won’t work- don’t forget)! Hopefully I did enough for people to know I’m a goody two shoes.
Oh and I bought milk on the way home. I’ve gone lacto-free and it’s really helped me with my acne.
*dreamy bloopy jangly flashforward music*
And now my shoulder is fine. And I have since left the house again. Many times. I am recovered.
Actually no. I hate it. I hate leaving the house. I hate the fatigue of coming home after work and the way air smells and how my brain needs to keep track of so much. It’s indescribable how previously normal things feel laborious to me now. Yet, without the breaks in life of outside/inside, I find time at home feels kinda aimless. I do things then wonder why. I go out and wonder why.
I’ve had too much time for introspection. And early on that was super nice, I’m planning some other creative projects. But now… I am so done. Enough self-analysis. I wish to go to the cinema and watch a noisy Marvel movie.
This was a moany moan. You may also have a moany moan. ’tis cathartic.
Okay thank you bye.
If you’re more an email person, join my mailing list. I post weekly-ish. I promise I won’t spam you.
Or read some recent posts that I am quite proud of:
- Do you ignore your tea until it gets cold?3 min quickie about when your tea goes cold. Heavy journalistic stuff. Proceed with caution.
- I took a week off work, but it didn’t change my life.5 min read about expecting too much from yourself because #alwaysbehustlin’
- My Sunday evening: doomscrolling, taking offense and yogaQuickie 2 min read about that dread you feel every Sunday evening.
- Was Valentine’s Day even relevant in the pandemic?Defending Valentine’s Day for 7 minutes straight. 7 mins of reading I mean.
- What school assignment still haunts you? Mine is the Tiger EssayGorgeous 10 min read about a formative childhood experience. With #siblinggoals