The Corona-Virus has the world on edge. Many have self-quarantined and travel restrictions are slowly being expanded in an attempt to reduce exposure and spread of this flu-like virus. Schools are going to on-line classes and many employers are finding ways for their employees to work remotely. People fear social isolation, even though it will be temporary. I say – Welcome to my world!
How will I work?
When I first became a caregiver, social media and the internet were not quite what they are today. The good thing was that I was able to get in on the scene early enough to be able to find a niche providing content. Literally the week I brought my son home from his 21-day stay in rehab I landed my first small freelance writing job. I wrote 400 word articles for $1 a piece and was glad to get it. It was the perfect start and my freelance work grew from there. But at that time, it was all so new to me.
My son had been in nursing homes and rehab facilities for about 18 months before I felt comfortably uncomfortable brining him home. Then I was all alone. It was him and me and he was total care. The social isolation began to do a number on my mind and emotions. So those of you facing a short time of possibly being isolated in your home – Welcome to my world!
Questions and Fears
At first, there were a lot of fears – but no one to talk to about them. There was no Facebook live or messenger video. Tons of questions always on the mind – how will I provide for my son and myself? I had rent and utilities, and insurance to cover. But working from home was new and scary. That’s one of the most mentioned things I’ve heard buzzing around social media – How will I pay my bills? How will my rent get paid? What if I can’t work? Welcome to my world. Most caregivers have these and many more questions about how they will make it when caring for a loved one. It’s a whole new world and it’s scary – but it’s doable. We do figure things out – we do make it. So will you.
It’s Not a Life Sentence, Relax
Social isolation, fear, loneliness – all part of the caregiver’s daily routine. If you are quarantined, it will be a short-term deal. The caregiver doesn’t always know when or if their “shift” will end. As a caregiver for my adult son who was injured in an automobile accident at 24, I received a life sentence of isolation and alone-ness. You’ll make it. It’s not a life sentence for you. Suck it up.
Will it be hard – probably. Will you lose money? Most likely. Will you get back to work and shovel your way out? Yes. Early on when I was struggling with trying to find work, I found a few inspirational quotes I turned into mantras to keep myself positive. My favorite was: ”Tears will get you sympathy, hard work will get you success.” I still live by that motto. We can sit around and cry (and it’s okay if we do) but at some point, we have to dry our tears, take a realistic look at where we are, and roll up our sleeves and figure it out.
Thriving – not Surviving
You’ll learn so many life lessons from isolation. If you heed them, you’ll be a better person when the quarantine is lifted. You’ll be stronger. More determined to find success through work. You may even be more satisfied with yourself as a person. You will make it. Cry if you must – it’s good for the soul. Then figure out how to survive. Better than that – figure out how to thrive in the situation and you’ll have success for a lifetime.
Welcome to my world – I hope you are better because of it and that you grow as a person. Maybe there will be a bit more compassion for those who live as shut-ins. And maybe you’ll be more understanding of those who can’t get out on a daily basis. We can all hope the world is a better place once this has ended.
Keep the Faith – It’ll Keep You
Keep the faith. Continue to trust God. He did not promise us a trouble-free existence. But He did promise us He’d be with us – and walk through the fire at our side. He’s not gone into social isolation Himself! Lol. Take this time to grow spiritually. Read more. Pray more. Seek Him – not for an escape – but for a relationship. Make this time count for something. If we as believers use this odd time we are living through as a catalyst and determine to grow closer to Him through it – the world will be a much better place when it’s over. And it will be over – for you; but not for caregivers. It’s all the same to us.