It seems the whole world is cancelled due to Corona virus. People are wearing masks and gloves, memes about washing hands are everywhere, the news is full of doom and gloom…
Times like these are when my OCD smiles smugly to itself and yells “I TOLLLLDDDDD YOOOOOUUUUUU!”
Every negative assumption from the president is an incompetent lying liar to people never wash their hands to humanity is one step away from Mad Max-style battling over toilet paper: Confirmed!
Medical contamination really isn’t even my forte. I’m more about creepy crawly stuff and intrusive thoughts. I do have neuroses about necrotizing fasciitis and brain eating amoebas, but not so much viruses. However, my husband and daughter (she hasn’t been diagnosed but I’d bet any amount of money she won the OCD lottery) are disease-paranoid, so they give me their mental cooties about literal cooties.
Our collective anxiety is helpful in many ways when the metaphorical shit hits the fan. Before half of America ran out and bought up the tp, my husband asked me to humor him when I went shopping and buy extra food or replenish anything that was running low. Instead of asking my already deal-prone self “Do I really need five for four dollar handsoaps? Do I need five sale boxes of cereal?” I just went with the grocery store flow and got them. So we had a stash of groceries and cleaning stuff before it was cool.
We lucked out in the meat department too. This is also indirectly related to OCD. I don’t like factory farmed meat. It’s an animal welfare issue for me as well as a contamination issue. I was vegetarian for many years before local grassfed meat became available to me. I want to be able to go to the farm and see the cow and its living arrangements.
Since that sort of meat is a billion dollars a pound in the grocery store, I buy it in bulk, and I had just purchased my quarter beef of the year with my tax return.
I had gloves for tie-dyeing and masks because I worry about inhaling soda ash. I’d already washed down my daughter’s school things because strep was going around. I wipe my doorknobs all the time with the Clorox wipes I haven’t run out of since probably the year 2010 when I became a parent, because kids are gross.
It isn’t the meek who shall inherit the earth. It’s the anxious.
It’s nice being an introvert, too, when you’re told to shelter in place. My biggest challenge is keeping my extrovert daughter socially fulfilled (time to call the grandparents! We know you’re home…). I’ll have to skip my once a week real-life contact with actual people (twice if I grocery shop or go to the library). I can handle that.
I am very thankful that my daughter’s school closed so I can keep her home. Also that my stepdad got placed in a nursing home (finally, just last week!) so my mother isn’t driving all over still doing paperwork. My husband got a laptop set up in our basement so he can work from home.
I hope everyone can work from home and find the resources they need while we’re all holed up for a bit. Hopefully we can make it to something like a new and improved normal after a few months. It sucks that it had to come to this. But maybe once it all blows over, everyone will have leftover hand sanitizer and toilet paper, a newfound appreciation for handwashing, and the next plague will be less dire.