He offered to put in my air conditioner and I was grateful, but worried.
It started in March of 2020, during the Covid lockdown. At first I loathed staying in the house. I was bored and angry. I missed my friends and my job.
Then, I got used to it. I only went where I needed to go and over time, I was fine with it. The longer it went on, the more difficult it became to go where I needed to go.
It got worse the day I got the call informing me that my job had been permanently canceled. Instead of paying me to open a building and assist twenty people, it would be more cost effective to have one person do it via Zoom.
I felt lost. Yet, secretly loved my new found isolation. When friends and family called me on the phone, I didn’t say much. Then, I stopped answering the phone.
There were only three people I picked up for. I let the rest go to voicemail. Some days, I didn’t want to pick up the phone at all. I did it out of fear, thinking they’d be worried and come over here to check on me. I couldn’t have that! I tried to convince myself I was fine, even though I was slipping deeper into isolation.
Two out of the three people started to catch on. One of them did come by to check on me without calling. I was pissed! It felt like a sneak-attack! Deep down, I knew I should be grateful that someone cared, and I was.
After he left, I could tell he was concerned. Years ago, he told me about two people he knew that had agoraphobia. He knew it was creeping up on me quick, and so did I. We didn’t talk about it that day. He joked about how I looked fine wrapped up in a bathrobe. I was glad he didn’t talk about it that day, but I knew it was a matter of time.
I did not want to have that talk! I tried to snap out of it, but I couldn’t. Fifteen months later, it had gotten worse. Then, the heat wave came. I almost put it in myself, but the air conditioner was heavy and I was afraid I’d drop it out the window. During my isolation, I had become weak, from lack of exercise. My diet was poor. Some days, I didn’t eat anything.
The first few days I just suffered in the heat. I was exhausted and felt sick. Then, he called. I told him I might do it myself. That’s when he offered to help. I was really suffering at that point, I said “that would be great, thank you.”
He came, and after he put in the air conditioner, we had the talk. I thank God for him everyday. The other two that I thought were “key people” in my life moved on, but he didn’t.
I trust him, I love him and I will overcome this for him and for myself. For the first time in fifteen months I know I can do it. I know, because this time I want to do it. I miss the old me, and so does he.
********inner conflict sets in********
-will I miss the isolation? Yes, I will. Like any toxic behavior, it has it’s pay-off’s, but in the end, is it worth it? No.