For almost two years I have lived in a continual state of fear of doing things outside of my safe space. I have taken each and every precaution that was made available to me. I believed the words of our government leaders. And while I do believe there is some merit to the information that is being delivered to us, I have to live a little and start 2022 by not living in total fear of the COVID-19 Pandemic.
The COVID-19 crisis is going to be what it is. I cannot be the change that makes it go away, I accept that. However, I cannot live in continual fear and not go out and about if I have the opportunity to do so, as long as it is safe and doesn’t carry a high risk. Remaining in my safe space isn’t a healthy choice for my mental or physical health. I know that things haven’t been what they should have been. I go through bouts of boredom and loneliness and know I don’t need to do that. There is plenty for me to do, even if I chose not to leave my house. If I can mentally focus, I can keep myself busy during the times when I cannot leave my home due to the weather or other circumstances. When those nice bouts of weather arrive, then it is time to pound the pavement or trail and get active and do the things I want and need to do.
I cannot choose the actions of others and what they do. I must do what is safe for me, In many cases I am living in the early days of COVID when the world was extremely fear mongered of the dangers. While there has been plenty of research from those early days and whether or not there are good protective measures in place to protect us, I can only know that I am doing my best to protect myself. I am fully vaccinated and boosted. I wear a mask when I cannot be six feet from others to protect myself. I try to physically distance myself when I can.
While I have been lucky to have never been in contact with someone who has been actively infected with COVID-19, I must always keep in my mind that the possibility cannot be ruled out and has an opportunity at any given moment. Even with as many safeguards as I have, it does not make me exempt from the fact that because of what I do and where I go that I could be in close contact with someone. Yes, I fear the testing and waiting, but there are advancements in that arena that make it much more rapid and easier to be completed. I have learned that it is no different than no other simple medical procedure that needs to be completed in a medical center.
Still, there are things that I still am very cautious about doing such as gathering in large congregate gatherings where ventilation and extensive protective measures are not undertaken. Therefore, I take advantage of virtual viewing opportunities for these events, if they are available. Technological advancements were made over the crisis to provide these options to those who do not feel comfortable attending large scale events because of apprehension of contracting COVID. COVID has also brought forth this technology and has made us realize that by doing so, it provides a connection to its customer base that cannot connect physically to. It provides this demographic the opportunity to be present in spirit when they are physically unable or afraid to do so. As time goes on, I would hope that these opportunities would continue to be provided so that those who cannot physically attend things are able to do so in some manner.
It has to be understood that everyone has to return to their sense of safety as they feel comfortable to do so. It is not wise to force feed your belief system or your feelings of safety upon others. There should be a mutual understanding of respect among each other in regards to the comfort level of each other and those that are more comfortable should not frown down on those who choose to be more cautious of being safe. As many disabilities, including those with and including autism can be invisible, we must acknowledge that we don’t always know the situations of those around us and when they are taking extra precautions, they are not being rude or scared, they may have extra precautions that must be taken.
Here’s to a less-fearful 2022! May we prosper well and have a better year!