About seven weeks ago, I was considering skipping my friend’s birthday party.
It won’t be more than 10-12 people, I thought, shouldn’t be too bad.
This was before everything was “shut down” and every other word in most conversations was “virus.” I’ve been following international news about coronavirus almost obsessively, since the beginning of the year. My anxiety levels were through the roof.
The minute we pulled up to the restaurant, I wanted to turn around and go back home. We eventually walk inside, and the place is packed. Throughout the entire hour and a half that we stayed, I felt almost as if I was going to drop dead right there on the floor, at any given minute.
I’ve always been a germaphobe, always found large crowds to trigger feelings of both anxiety and claustrophobia. I mean… add a possibility of an infectious disease to the equation, and things can get bad, quickly.
So, we’re sitting at the table waiting for the birthday girl to arrive. All I see are people dancing, bumping into each other, touching. You really don’t realize how much you touch the people you’re close to until you start paying very close attention to it. Playfully hitting someone’s arm when you laugh at something they say, getting within millimeters of their face when you’re talking and they can’t hear you because of the loud music, etc.
I’m sitting at our table, unable to concentrate on anything. Well, anything other than telling Mark to “stop…