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The Struggle is Real: Isolation

Covid-19. It has taken hold of our world and thrown our lives into chaos. Over night school stopped, sports weren’t running, some jobs shut down and we went weeks without face-to-face interactions. It devastated a lot of people financially, mentally, emotionally and physically.

It has given me a lot of time to reflect on my life, which I haven’t been loving. The frequent minor falls, the constant mobility and coordination issues, the persistent sadness. It’s hard. I’ve turned to writing my Dark Shadows series as a way to escape and cope with this new world. Writing makes me happy. Everyone needs a little happy, especially right now.

Yet for me and some others like me, life remains somewhat unchanged.

Rather then two kids at home, I have three. There are no extra curriculars to distract us during the week. And my husband hasn’t had to stop working. Plus amazon and online shopping has always been my thing. So no other changes.

The isolation and feelings of loneliness is something I already deal with because of Friedreich’s Ataxia. Leaving the house to go somewhere always has challenges. The house/building we’re visiting may not be accessible for me (I use a walker), leaving my house can be too mentally and physically exhausting so leaving isn’t worth it, or I’ll find myself surrounded by people who are having fun and all I want to do is get up and dance with them, but I can’t. It can be depressing.

On the other hand, I need the socialization and the push to remind me that despite my situation, I can find happiness. That I can still be a part of a bigger story then my own. I love my husband and children, but I also love feeling like I have a place out in the world.

I hope everyone remembers that one day this’ll all seem like a bad dream, a distant memory, a story to share with future generations. For most.

Remember, a vaccine for Covid-19 is expected. This trauma will end, and we will heal. I would love to say the same for Friedreich’s Ataxia!

Erica Richer

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