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1 Year Into Quarantine As An Introvert

I’m sure most of you reading are either already fucked up or just about to be because it’s St Patrick’s day but who cares… read my blog.

I didn’t initially want to ride the “1 year into quarantine” train but I wanted to do my first genuine non-ranty non-frat blog so here we are. 

All my life I never really knew if I was an introvert because my absolute favorite thing in the world is seeing a friend die laughing or even exhale through their nose with something I say, but I also like being my own fucking person.

Also, I get it. I know what your thinking. Another introvert complaining about how he has to amp himself up before going to a party, how hard it is watching so much youtube that he pays for youtube premium, or some other made-up issue that excuses him for being weird. This isn’t that.

I have LOVED being in quarantine. I don’t mean to say that this situation is good… because it’s not. I am specifically commenting on issues that I’ve dealt with before quarantine and how things have changed.

I have been able to put my mental and physical health first more regularly than I usually do and it has really helped me as a person. There are aspects however that may seem like I’m shouting for help but are actually steps forward for me. Like scheduling the days of the week that I allow myself to drink or scheduling messages to friends I should’ve been talking to this whole time because I’m scared to reach out in fear of not getting a response. But, I truly think it has helped me get control of my day-to-day life because I also schedule the meals I eat, the days I go to the gym and the things I do to get closer to my family.

Before quarantine, I wanted to appear like I had the ability to just let things happen and situations play out, regardless of how I was feeling or if I wanted to do them in the first place… like that saying “ignorance is bliss”. I now know that that was absolutely destroying my mental health because I was actually thinking way too much about where I was, who I was with, and what other people thought of me. I would take those feelings and shove them down in order to appear what I thought in a social situation was… normal and then be paralyzed with anxiety the second I left the situation by trying to recap in my head if everyone liked me or if I should’ve even gone. I now know it’s okay to have those thoughts and feelings as long as you bring them to the surface and deal with them. Let’s take drinking for example.

I enjoy drinking alone.

If you are a friend of mine you are probably saying “jesus not this again” so I won’t go into my whole argument (I already wrote a blog on that), but I’ll boil it down to, I’m not sad when I drink alone so don’t berate me for doing it. Before and even somewhat during the beginning of quarantine, drinking was something that I HAD to do. I HAD to buy a handle of Jameson after my 3 am-10 am Best Buy shift so that I could subtly take sips later on in the day to help me sleep so I could get to bed and wake up on time for my next early morning shift. To be clear, I didn’t HAVE to do this, my brain just thought it was the only solution to the problem I was overthinking about.

Now, I ALLOW myself to drink. I dictate when and where it is appropriate to get drunk, and I think it has really helped. I don’t think I have blacked out in well over a year. Certainly, there have been some nights where the end is somewhat foggy, but, through some millennial Sherlock Holmes type shit, I always find out that the night was basically over and I didn’t do anything besides make some food and go to sleep. It is nowhere near how I was in college where I would go out every Saturday and spend every Sunday in my bed with my room locked avoiding every phone call or text in fear that I had done something wrong. I didn’t want to know what I did. I wanted to not exist for a day and say ignorance is bliss when in reality I was not being ignorant, I was spending full days alone thinking about made-up scenarios and what people now think of me.

I still have trouble with that image of pretending like I don’t care for the sake of appearing normal when I actually give more of a shit than the average person about… people. The opposite end of that is, that sometimes when I express my feelings they aren’t reciprocated and now I am back to square one of overthinking. “Why did he say that?” “what does he mean?” “do they actually like me or am I just funny so they allow me to come?” I need to walk the fine line of saying what I feel, getting a response, and learning from it without thinking too much about it.

The main point of this blog is to make people feel more comfortable with this global situation we are in and remind you that you are your own person. You need to feel comfortable being alone. Yes, a whole year of quarantine isn’t exactly what I mean by alone, but you get my point. You don’t need the constant gratification from being cool in front of people or social media because your brain is the best entertainment there is. 

My second favorite thing in the world, behind making someone else laugh, is making myself laugh. Most of the time it’s just me doing a stupid voice in the shower or singing a song about what I’m doing, but it makes me feel like I am there for myself and that I still got it. Not “got it” as in being funny but “got it” as in… happiness. If I can make myself happy for 10 seconds in the shower, then I know there’s happiness somewhere in me… I just have to find it.

It gives me hope, and hope during these times is hard to come by so take every drop you can find. Reach out to friends, make a connection, but remember to connect with yourself every once in a while because just because you are alone… doesn’t mean you actually are.

“Alright TFM, stop with this sappy shit and write about the best place in a frat house to fuck… where Grandex at?”  

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Written by Conall Lynch

Conall drinks vodka and chases it with a Granny Smith Apple. He likes to say “the mustache is just for content” but deep down wants to keep it.

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