Introverts have been training their whole lives for something like this. We never quite knew why, but we all had some inkling in the back of our minds that self-induced social distancing would come in handy one day.
Truth be told, I feel like I’m living two lives at the moment. When I’m at The House on the Hill, it is business as usual. Sure, I might have bought a few extra groceries at the store this week and put them in the freezer “just in case”, but other than that, life is normal.
There’s always a four pack of toilet paper under the bathroom sink. I’ve always got plenty of writing projects and books waiting to be read to ensure that I will keep busy even if I can’t waste away my time watching sports. There’s never anyone around to spread their germs, lick my doorknobs, or contaminate my air and water supply.
When I’m inside The House in the Hill, social distancing is the norm. I’m not doing anything different here than I would were there not a pandemic sweeping the globe.
Once I leave the safety of home, though, life is different. Everything is at Threat Level Midnight. And, yes, I just watched that episode of The Office, so that’s why I went with the term, but it’s perfectly appropriate.
At work, there is Purell, facemasks, and ILI precautions. I actually feel nervous once I enter the office, and a fluctuating anxiety level haunts me until I leave for the day.
I’m a natural at cutting myself off from the rest of the world, and any germs that might be a part of the package, but when I’m forced to go out into it in order to pay the bills, I’m suddenly opening myself up to all the pandemics the other people on the planet have to offer.
When I’m home, I feel much more in control. I don’t have to watch the news, I don’t have to read email updates about mandated precautions, and I don’t have to worry about what germs might be brought to me by others.
I’m very calm here. This morning, I went about business as usual, which meant going for a long run. Hardly anyone else was out, so it was like moving through a ghost town. I felt like a character on The Walking Dead. I kept imagining that the virus had left me as the only one still in the neighborhood.
And the thought of being all alone didn’t worry me one bit. In fact, it made me smile.
Like I said, social distancing is my jam. I’ve been doing it my whole life, and it is like second nature to me now.
As a Modern Philosopher, I have accepted that there is nothing I can do to control what is happening around me. If I panic, if I lose sleep over my impending contamination, if I hoard toilet paper, if I walk around in a Hazmat suit, it’s not going to change the way the virus spreads.
I’m choosing to live my life as I always have, which just so happens to be what all the experts recommend.
All those years of extreme introvert training are finally paying off just like something deep inside me always knew they would.
Ironically, everyone who bullied me or made fun of me for being the quirky, weirdo loner is now trying to be just like me.
Stay safe. Be strong. Let your Inner Introvert keep you out of harm’s way…