The Struggles of Living Alone During Quarantine

The coronavirus is taking its toll on the world. 

I don’t complain often because there are people dying of COVID alone across the world and their families are left to grieve without getting to say proper goodbyes. There are essential workers getting paid dust and people still struggling to pay bills due to losing jobs or side hustles. There are parents struggling to telework while keeping their kids educated and entertained at home (if this hasn’t proven that teachers deserve way more money and support, I honestly don’t know what will). There are way bigger issues to worry about, I know. 

At this point, it’s been almost 4 months since I’ve been in quarantine. My last day of working in the office was March 13 before my organization went on full telework. I don’t go out really other than to go to the store and the occasional visit to my immediate family. I was good with that at first. The first few months were completely fine. I’ve enjoyed working from home (and still do, honestly). Netflix and I had an amazing relationship already, and then add Disney+ to the mix? BLISS. I got to take more naps and virtual events were fun…for a while. 

None of us really thought Corona and this quarantine was going to stick around this long. I gave it, at most, two weeks before I would be back to my regularly scheduled program. *Let’s all laugh together*

But now….this mess is starting to take its toll. Even for the introverted side of me. 

This post is for me and those like me who are struggling at the time with no others in the home. I’m solo dolo. No man. No kids. Not even a goldfish to watch swim around in a tank. ALONE. 

A few of my issues can be said of anyone that’s actually staying inside outside of the essentials. I’ve gotten to the point where I can’t buy any unhealthy snacks because I will eat them all in a matter of a few days. At times, I struggle to stay motivated like many of us do, because my routines (work, sleep, etc.) are ALL OFF. There’s only so much streaming a person can do before even that gets dull. I have the blog and virtual Zumba classes to keep me a little occupied. I may call some people now and then and have socially distanced hangouts (I just saw my best friend in person recently for the first time since March!). However, I’m not doing much else and that has been a mess, for a few reasons. 

The loneliness eventually gets to you, no matter how much you like to be alone. 

At the start of all of this, I remember my dad calling me like, “Brittany, if this all gets too crazy, I want you to come home.” The family home in Southern Maryland. Only 20 minutes away, but I prefer my peace and quiet. Now, I feel like being around my loud immediate family would have been better. You’re living the same old day, each and every day, with nobody to talk to, joke around with, hug, or anything. Not even just a romantic partner, but a partner or people period. Unless you’re a complete loner (no disrespect to those people), no matter how much you like your solitude, it can get really lonely and tiresome.

You’re face to face with your thoughts and triggers with no other distractions.

I don’t talk about it a whole lot but I have been healing from a bad breakup late last year and that has been hell, especially during this time. And I don’t have my regular activities to distract me from my negative thoughts and triggers. It’s a good and bad thing because I’ve had to deal with my pain head-on and work on myself and my issues. I already knew that healing wasn’t linear, but it’s been even harder now that I have been on my own. I’ll be fine one moment and broke down crying in my bed the next. Times like that, I wish I had someone in-house to talk with just to distract me or comfort me.

These problems can and have affected the mental health of many people during this time. I’ll write more on how I’ve managed to cope soon but here are some ideas.

No matter how “strong” you are or how much you don’t want to “bother” folks, reach out to other people, therapists, or hotlines where needed. I’m really sick of video calls (I have them all the time for work), but I do those or regular calls just to keep in contact with people. I see my immediate family and keep my distance, just to say hi and spend some time with them on special days like Mother’s and Father’s Day, or my little cousin’s eighth-grade graduation. I need that interaction!

Find healthy ways to cope like picking up a new hobby, journaling, or doing some type of exercise. If I didn’t have Zumba and other free virtual workouts, I’d probably be in a much worse spot right now.

Try to stick to some kind of routine for your day. I struggle with this so much, but I notice when I go to bed and wake up at a certain time, work out each day, etc., I have a much better and more productive day.

I’ll be back soon with other ways that I’m coping, but hopefully this helps! Thinking of you all during these tough times.

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