Making it Through the Dark Time

O.K. This is the deal. You’ve been locked in more or less by yourself or with one or more persons for about six months now. Some of you don’t think you’ll get sick so you don’t comply with recommendations regarding the Coronavirus but most of you do.

That means that you’re either more in love with the person or people you’re sheltering with or, if you live alone, you’re happy you don’t have to share constant space with another or you’re sad and depressed because you’re pretty sure people who are locked in with another person are better off because they, at least, aren’t alone.

In other words, what you were before, you still are today but times fifty, which could be making you so miserable you’re abusing substances like crazy, or you’re using great restraint. Congratulations. You won’t be an addict when this ends. If you’re locked in with a mate and the relationship was good before Corona came along and wrecked us, you’re even happier today because you’ve had more time to spend together. Obviously, it’s the opposite case for those not happy and the same goes for being alone on with someone.

If you’re happy you don’t need coaching. If you’re not happy, there are some things to try. Make separate places where you live even if it means tacking a sheet down the middle of the room to separate areas. That place is off-limits to the other, for any reason, ever. The other person can knock or call out but they can’t just walk in and that feels good, to know you can have privacy. Agree on times you’re not going to talk to each other like a quiet hour after a meal or before dinner. During that hour, you’re free to do whatever around your living space but not free to initiate conversation. Pretend you’re living with a stranger. Take the initiative when it is interactive time to reach out for a hug or give a compliment. Don’t be hold out Harry, or you’ll soon have a hold out Henrietta, and no one will get touched or openly loved. Stop counting, and just do it. Look, this is the deal. We don’t know when this is going to end. Most of you will continue living the way you’re now living so if you’re isolating except to go to essential places, it’s up to you to figure out what, within the limits of the new rules, you can do to make yourself happy, ask for what you want, don’t wait to see if it’s offered, the other guy doesn’t have a crystal ball. And be generous with your words and actions like the person you think you are. It’s easy to feel like you’re a kind and warm person. It’s harder to think about the other guy and think about what you need, so you can either do it or ask for it. As for singles, no, going out to bars

Now, for those of you who are alone, hopefully, you have access to the Internet. It’s up to you to find groups and chat rooms for people living alone during this awful time. There are many groups, most churches, AA, free literary groups, and library events have activities they do on Zoom. It’s a curve to get used to it but, if you’re lonely, don’t quit. Keep at it until it feels like you’ve always done it. Don’t stop at one group, find as many as you can, search under your interests for groups you might enjoy.

In other words, the world is the same but not at all the same. What you used to do you can’t, for the most part, do right now, but you figured out how to do the things you were doing, you figured out how to survive as an adult. This is a new learning opportunity. How do you live with Corona and not die?