Am I Suited to Social Distancing?

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  • I don’t even know what week of stay-at-home we’re in, which shows how time is changing, most days are the same, one can be exchanged for the other. Maybe week 6. But time passes differently now. It lacks momentum and change.
  • Stories about hospital nurses dying, or parents spreading Covid-19 to their kid, who then dies. Stories about people who can’t pay rent, are hungry, are sick. Or have already died. And heroic stories of sacrifice for others. And helping each other out. These are the real stories so far. What right do I have to record a coronavirus diary? My answer: my story isn’t finished yet. How do I know I still won’t face the worst of the pandemic, that I will suffer and die, or worse, one of my loved ones will. Who says dying early in a pandemic is more tragic than dying later? Or a better story: I do something helpful and heroic. So far it’s only been staying home with my family and donating blood.
  • Although I wanted to hug a friend today I wonder if I’m actually well-suited to social distancing. I was never skilled or natural at the hugging and hand-shaking and kissing hello and goodbye. I’m often not sure what to do, even with friends. Parties are the worst. I don’t like getting touched by people I don’t know well. Maybe people think I’m gross and don’t want to touch me. Remember: This person I hug, that one is a handshake of one style or another, that’s a kiss on the cheek and hug combo. For others this is a natural talent, but not for me.
  • I have an advantage over others during this time: sheltering at home with my family is one of the best outcomes for me. It’s not always easy and smooth, but always there is love and ultimately togetherness. My family is everything to me. I’m savoring this time to be with them and get to know them better.
  • Look, there’s a robin out my window. Hop, hop, peck at the ground. Head up, eyes forward and scan. Hop, hop, peck at the ground. There’s another robin. They both look well-fed. Such freedom and impunity on my lawn. Which means my cats are aged and largely retired from sport hunting.

By David Klein

David Klein

Published novelist, creative writer, avid reader, discriminating screen watcher.

Novels

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