Living Alone in Coronavirus-ville

If you’re a senior, you are much more likely to die if you get Coronavirus. According to Stat, analyzing the 72,314 Chinese who first contracted the disease, the fatality rates by age are:

  • 2.3% — average of all confirmed cases
  • 0.2% ages 10-39
  • 0.4% ages 40-49
  • 1.3% ages 50-59
  • 14.8% ages 80+

So… given the risks, many seniors are self-isolating, myself included. Fortunately I’m able, as our university has cancelled Face-to-Face instruction for this month. Likely it will remain in effect the rest of this school semester.

The problem with self-isolating when you live alone

I like living alone. I’ve tried living with a spouse, a friend and a lover over the years — and living alone is just better for me.

However… that preference included substantial in-person, face-to-face encounters. Meeting with work colleagues in the hall, counseling students, going to parties, going to movies with friends, heck — even chatting up acquaintances at the post office, restaurants, and my local RV store.

I’d drop into Starbucks. I’d hit Wegman’s at least 2-3 times a week for goat milk, pasture-raised eggs, and maybe one of the hot dishes laid out so appealingly and ready to scoop up. (Is ANYONE still eating food laid out where everyone can breath on it?)

Now I limit my grocery visits to once every 10 days or so — when I run out of something both perishable and critical. I spray bleach on the handle of the shopping cart before using it. And my skin crawls — wanting to get out of the store. I still get a sushi lunch (because I see them using rubber gloves to prepare the food, and see it’s enclosed in plastic).

Frankly, I’m going stir crazy.

It’s good for my (lack of) exercise. I’m now walking the dogs along the river levee most days when the weather is good. I’m doing more work on my yard than I’ve done in years. But… it’s not socializing.

Chatting with friends on the phone just isn’t good enough.

Have you seen/heard the Italians locked into their apartments because of the coronavirus — who have taken to singing out their balconies? Neighbors join in and it looks like a new form of socializing.

What do you think? Ideas? Suggestions? What works?

4 thoughts on “Living Alone in Coronavirus-ville

    1. Yes, but… it kills me to see my face talking — without makeup. Am I the only one this crazy about this? I see my darn face in the screen and it’s so distracting/annoying that I can scarcely keep track of the conversation! I’m fine going out seeing people without makeup — as long as I don’t have to actually see myself. Maybe there’s a way to turn off the screen that shows me? I’ll be darned if I’m wearing makeup every day!

  1. Marlene, Thanks so much for SeniorDefender.NET. COVID-19 is a force majeure and a major defense against its movement is of course “social distancing.” So, sad to say, visiting nursing homes to cheer people up is a NO NO at least for the near future. One outlet is going into nature such as walks in the woods, paddling a canoe, etc. I am helping mentor foreign students even in my so-called retirement and I’m also working on “issues.” Khaleq and I are proposing a “Water Czar” to pull together water authorities and organizations into a more effective group to combat water challenges in PA. I have always wanted to write full time and I’m finishing a new book on servant leadership. Best wishes.

    1. Hi Jim, sounds like you’re making a great retirement! I’ve turned in my papers for August of this year. Hopefully I’ll be able to travel some by then!

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