What I’ve Learned in Three Weeks of Quarantine

Today is Day 24 of quarantining at home, and apart from a 3-hour trip to the dentist on Day 18, I haven’t left my house. I’m not married, no kids, no pets, and no roommates, so it’s been a pretty lonely three weeks. Other than my video chats and phone calls with family, friends, colleagues, and students, I don’t get much interaction with others. I’m trying to check my privilege, as I realize I have a comfortable home, working electricity and plumbing, consistent Internet, enough food, and I don’t have to worry about money, which I know many people in the world don’t have at this time, but today I’m feeling the effects of isolation.

Here’s what I’ve learned in my 3+ weeks of quarantine:

The hair on my legs seems to have stopped growing. I haven’t shaved my legs since I went into lockdown, and by looking at them, you wouldn’t really know. I’m way past the prickly stage, too.

I’m not a self-motivated person at home. Despite all the advice on the internet touting, “You have all the time in the world, you should do all the things you’ve always said you never have time for! There’s no excuse now,” I seem to find an excuse.

My attention span, which if I’m being honest was already wavering (I blame the constant interruptions of modern society for that one), is down to a few minutes at a time. I have started 9 books. Nine. And I haven’t finished one yet. Now, I’m a multiple-books-at-a-time person by nature, but this is overboard. I can’t even watch a TV show all the way through in one sitting. What is going on?

At first, I was excited about cooking and was eating way too much food because, hello, what else have I got to do?, but now all the food in the house is boring. I eat when my stomach is growling, but it’s all pretty blah. Well, except for the fresh-out-of-the-oven bread slathered in butter, but I can’t eat that every day, can I?

I crave routine and structure, and I need to leave my house to have a sense of normalcy. I’m not a work-from-home person. Guess I can throw away those dreams of becoming a travel blogger.

My moods fluctuate from really happy to complete boredom or frustration. Yesterday I was so full of energy, and today, nothing. It’s a dice roll each day I wake up.

I am hoping that things get easier next week when virtual school starts back up again, as the school day will give me a routine to follow. What have you learned while in quarantine?

16 thoughts on “What I’ve Learned in Three Weeks of Quarantine

  1. Book Dragon

    Thanks for this Slice Aggie. I can relate to a lot of what you have written. I learned that connecting with other people helps lighten my mood. I’ve participated in a yoga class via Zoom as well as choir via Zoom. Both help lift the spirits.

  2. edifiedlistener

    Relieved, I suppose, is the word I’m looking for. The up-down roller coaster nature of these days have already become apparent here and it’s only been 2 weeks! Today happens to be one of those downer days for me. I’m relieved to hear that I’m not alone that other folks may well be experiencing similar feelings. I hope it gets better soon. We’re all learning a lot about ourselves and I’m finding that’s not always easy. Thank you, as always, for your candor.

  3. loudenclearblog

    This was a great slice. I can relate in SO many ways. Especially the excuses. I think it’s because I don’t have a timeline. In my head, I have forever to do things, so why do them now? Probably not the best mindset. Hopefully next week will be better. 🙂

  4. Sarah Parker

    So much truth here. I also feel such a sense of distractedness in my reading. I can imagine how stir crazy you must feel. I find my mood is so different each day with this uncertainty. I left my house to go to a park. Have you done that? You might see some people there, too.

  5. livinglife816287820

    Yes, thank you for sharing things so honestly. I do so agree with everything you say about having time but then not the inclination and starting multiple books and feeling totally unmotivated. I seem to have had less time this past week than when I was busy almost full time. Someone talked about the grieving process caused by isolation and I think it’s very true. My heaviest burden right now is that we can’t work with our students at all and don’t know how long this will continue….

  6. Anita Ferreri

    Your post is raw and powerful. I too live alone but have have provided “essential” childcare for a 2 and 4 year old along with online learning – so my days have been busy. Yet, I have been to no stores and no real contact with people. So, my mood can become very dark and I have times when motivation is not happening!

  7. Terje

    Your honest posts have helped me to prepare for what’s to come and how to adjust and what to pay attention to. I know that managing my state of mind is essential. I know I will never want a job that requires sitting behind a screen for hours.

  8. RiverBrown

    Right with you on the lack of routine, up and down about cooking, bursts of energy to exercise or DO something, then flopping back into passivity. I think it is part of the package. I have my 91 year old mom as company, but feel alone in having to make care decisions if she gets sick.

  9. mschiubookawrites

    I enjoy the conversational tone of this post. I think our brains are so overloaded that sitting and finishing a book is extremely difficult. I set timers to read and can only read a chapter (if that) at a time. Hang in there. I hope an “up” day is on the horizon.


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