I have always been an introvert, but after the 2020 pandemic I think I became a recluse. We were being extra careful at first because of my son’s weakened immune system, then things seemed to explode and get much worse after we all got sick and my son developed complications. I think the fear of him catching Covid again and getting worse was paralyzing for me.
So I did what I seem to do best: I hid from the world.
We were already homeschooling but we stopped going to our homeschool co-op. We didn’t go to events. We watched church service from home. Our whole lives changed and it was like an avalanche; once we started pulling away from society, it became easier and easier to seclude ourselves even more. What started out as a way to protect our kids from getting sick again soon became a full-fledged fear for me.
We finally went back to our homeschool co-op in August and we are back in church now. I have been taking baby steps to get us back into some form of normal again. The kids got sick with Covid again and it affected another one of our children with complications, so we now have two of four kids with long-term effects, but we are finally able to go to parties again, go to events and feel some sort of normal without feeling absolute panic and fear internally.
None of these changes were easy for me and I hate to admit that.
I let fear consume my life and made all my decisions based on that fear. I fully believe that we made the right decision to step back from things for a while, but where I went wrong was allowing my fear to take over and make every decision for me. Instead of my prayer life guiding me, I let fear consume me and based all of my decisions on what was less scary for me. It was exhausting, and getting out of that mindset was harder than I ever thought possible.
Now that I am on the other side of it, I see how unhealthy the entire situation became. But when you are in the middle of it, you feel like you are doing what is best for you and your family. Living in fear is no way to live. Letting fear control every decision isn’t a way to live sustainably.