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The daft aspects of isolating

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Sunny Clouds:
Earlier today, I was 'verbally pinged' by a neighbour.  I'd popped round yesterday for something and she'd invited me in for a while.  She's now been told by someone close to her that they've tested positive.

Well, I can't complain about isolating.  I've no job to go to, and although I've just re-ordered meds, I've at least two weeks worth left, so I can just phone the pharmacy and ask them to hold onto them.  I'm a prepper so I've tinned/packet food in the house and by coincidence, yesterday I went shopping for fresh food and picked up a packet of lateral flow tests.

I don't actually get much exercise, and if I want fresh air, I've got a garden.  If I were to break 'quarantine' and go to a local shop, it would be for biscuits that I don't need and am trying to give up. 

So I've no excuse to go anywhere.

Yet I feel penned in.  Expletive ridiculous.

I've a gardener and that will be a saga, no doubt.  I'm absolutely certain he'd think it twaddle if I said not to come round.  We wouldn't need to come round, and he could come in the back gate so we wouldn't need to meet.

So I have two concerns.  Firstly (and frankly my bigger concern) would be that people might think I'm not taking care.

The other concern is the cup of coffee and his biscuits which I leave out for him in the outhouse.  I can sanitise my hands before touching the kettle or the teabag, but what if I breathe over the mug and spoon?  Aargh.  His answer would probably be not to worry about it, but I would worry.  Aha - could I get an uncoviddy neighbour to bring him a cuppa?

I wonder how soon I'm due to pick up a neighbour's meds.  Could I offer to pay the gardener to pick up her meds and mine instead of doing my garden, thus getting rid of my angst?  Or maybe to do someone else's garden instead of mine this week?  I wonder who I know that could do with some help.

Meanwhile, my big difficulty is how to avoid guilt-tripping about feeling niggly over being 'trapped' when I'm nothing of the sort, and when people without the luxury of an internet link, a telephone, and a garden self-isolate for months without whinging.

Get a grip, Sunny.  Oh, and this isn't an excuse to 'self isolate' from your mop, your vacuum cleaner, your pile of paperwork that needs filing, or your iron and ironing board!

My advice which you can take or leave, would be to let your gardener know that you are self isolating to be cautious, that they can let themselves in the side gate to do the garden and please on this one occassion could they bring their own refreshments as you'll have to stay inside while they are here. That relieves any gardener guilt. 

As for meds, you'll just have to let the person know who you normally collect for that you are unable to this week as you are self isolating. If you need meds yourself, is there anyone you could ask to pick yours up for you and leave them on the doorstep?

The important thing is that this situation is not your fault and you cannot take on guilt that isn't yours to take, that's called "false guilt". It's not your responsibility to solve the problems of the people you normally help either, because this is a situation you didn't create. 

I realise it's hard and so easy to feel that you are letting people down but by protecting others while you self isolate and allow other potential volunteers to step forward temporarily you are helping others feel better about themselves and you're doing all that you can to keep everyone safe. 

It goes without saying that I hope your fleeting indirect contact comes to nothing and within a few days you will know you're fine. Hugs.

Sunny Clouds:
Thanks, Fiz, that's really helpful.

I'm alright for my meds because I normally order when I've a couple of weeks worth left, so it's just a question of letting the pharmacy know.  Getting the gardener to pick them up was because he doesn't like being given paid time off.  He's a near neighbour who's been helping me for years. 

I didn't reply to you straight away because I phoned and he's agreed to do what you've suggested, i.e. come via the side gate and bring his own refreshments.

As for the other neighbour's meds, I can't remember when I last picked them up.  I'll call the local contact that asks me to collect them for her and say how long I'll be isolating for.  

Thanks for un-guilt-tripping me.

Sunny Clouds:
PS - I didn't tell him it wasn't me that realised all I had to do was to tell him I was isolating and to let himself in and bring his own refreshments.

It's very easy to spot "false guilt" in others in situations not of their making but the drive "not to let others down" is so strong that it's easy to miss in ourselves  :f_hug:


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