You may have noticed -- or very well may not have, which is fine, because I hardly expect to the front-of-mind for the entire universe -- that at the start of the year I finally did follow through on what I've been saying I might do for ages, and stopped updating this blog regularly. I figured I'd probably still check in every few months or so with a little update on what's going on with me, or some random thoughts or something.
I figured that whenever I finally got around to doing that, the worst thing I'd have to talk about was the fact that we lost my grandmother recently. Which was incredibly sad -- she was beloved by a lot of people -- but hardly unexpected, given her age.
A global pandemic, however, was very much unexpected. Not that it should have been, maybe. God knows I've read enough books talking about how inevitable something like this happening probably was. Still. The whole thing feels surreal. Fictional. That's a feeling I've been having off and on for the last couple of decades, to be honest, but it almost seems to be a permanent state now, and I have no idea what to do with that. I used to feel excited about the idea of living in the future. Now I am clearly doing so, and I have no idea how to get to grips with it.
For the moment at least, as far as I know, I and my nearest and dearest are doing OK. Well, not sick, anyway. And I'm still working. First my organization sent as many people home to work remotely as possible and cut the staff in the building down to a skeleton crew. And I kept going to work, because I'm one of the bones in the skeleton. Then our governor issued a stay-at-home order and directed non-essential businesses to close. But my bosses declared us essential. Based on... I don't know what. I don't think I'm essential. But I'm still going in to work. I don't feel good about it. I feel like I may be subverting a public health order aimed at saving lives for no truly justifiable reason, something that seems to me distressingly emblematic of all the ways in which our society is fucked up right now. But I don't make these decisions, I guess, so I continue to do what I'm told, and I try to keep my moral qualms and my existential crises to myself. Mostly.
They're paying me time and a half, though. I'm gonna donate some of the extra to food banks, because there are surely a lot of people earning zero right now and wondering how the hell they're going to eat.
I do find the whole situation richly ironic, I have to admit. I know so many people who are going stir-crazy, desperate to be allowed to leave their houses, to be social again. Me, I long for my home every second I'm away from it. It's the only place I feel safe and comfortable right now, if I'm entirely honest. And my personality is such that I genuinely could just stay here and never see another human being for a year or so and be perfectly fine, psychologically. Or at least as fine as I am normally. Ha, ha.
Anyway. That's the state of things for me right now. This is me, checking in, reaching out. Whatever.
Try to stay safe out there. Try to stay sane. Good luck to all of us.