The Gift of Isolation

Anyone else feel like they are living in an obvious/social messaging/humanity might perish/thick in foreshadowing 90’s movie, as the drama increases over this widespread struggle to get a grip on a virus that has demonstrated the world is smaller than we thought?

On the heels of one of the most spiritual moments I have experienced (more on that in another post), comes the test that leaves me in isolation for two weeks. If truth be told, I thought my biggest test of 2020 was already upon me. There have been some big changes with work, family struggles remain mountainous, and my identity has been significantly challenged in the face of a health twist that I should have seen coming, but didn’t.

My response?

I accept this challenge! And, because so many others are facing the same dilemma of what to do with themselves over the coming weeks/months, I suggest we:

  • Stay connected in whatever ways are possible
  • Get organized! Plan how to use this distraction-free gift of time
  • Breathe, hope and love in the manner… steady.

The first thing I did to honor my isolation, was make a list. A BIG list. This felt overwhelming and like I should perhaps re-think the potential for a Netflix binge, so I allocated the items into 4 categories: Personal, Family, Home, and Business. Sometimes the lines got blurred and I really did not know what task belonged in which category, so I considered who or what would benefit from the efforts or success of the particular task.

Voila! Here is a snapshot of the lists.

My motivator each day is knowing that this season in our global history is going to make a strong memory. Hopefully, I will have forgotten the ‘almost’ drive from Atlanta to Savannah, where we turned around on the highway and headed to the airport against every fun-loving, adventurous instinct in my body.

Even though the weight of not being able to visit family members feels desperate… worried if they are sick, helpless if they are vulnerable, extra- isolated in the hospital or incarcerated, unreachable across the city or across the globe… despair would be understandable. But this is not the attitude I want to foster.

As much as I cannot control the outside world currently, I can control what I do with my time, space, energy and resources. Please leave a comment about how you have crafted a meaningful intention for yourself or how you are defining a successful isolation phase.

This isolation is going to be a gift…so, I say… thank you.

AJ

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2 replies to “The Gift of Isolation”

  1. Cari says:

    Thanks for sharing your positive spin on isolation and hopefully going forward your “health twist” (I’m concerned the term you’re choosing is a major down-play) is going to be manageable and not too life-altering for you.

    Isolation. It feels like I have been training for this for a couple of years as I have increasingly withdrawn from social contact with my peers (my choice that will at some point need to be explored and addressed). At the same time, Rick and I have become more and more immersed in supporting our 3 almost-90 year old parents as they face issues that come with their age. Right now that support involves ensuring they have what they need to “shelter in place”, convincing them of the need for it and providing reassurance that it isn’t forever. The biggest hurdle this week was convincing them to not attend the funeral of a friend/church member even as I questioned myself if I was being over-cautious and over-bearing. We live in a small community without a lot of world travellers but knew that a number of people from Vancouver would be at the funeral. Today I found out our next-door neighbour was at the dental conference where numbers of people were infected. Thankfully he is not showing any symptoms so far. The most basic marker of a successful isolation phase for me is if Rick, our parents, and I come out the end of this without having been infected or requiring any medical resources that are in needed by others. The gift of isolation is already being experienced through the love and understanding others are communicating as we reach out to each other.

    1. AJ says:Author

      Yes yes, thank you for sharing! Such a keen insight to the contrast I am seeing from my urban perspective. Xo

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