My Autism-informed experience developing
agoraphobia during the pandemic.
My friends say the soldiers at the military
base caught a virus
That nobody knows very much about.
I learned the meaning of the word
And a new meaning to the word “isolation.”
My math teacher told us today that
She highly recommends cleaning out our
And bringing everything home,
“of an abundance of caution.”
I nod absentmindedly,
Thinking instead of the party I have this
COVID-19 is deadly. Stop the spread now.
Ignoring public-health direction endangers
lives. STAY HOME.
Protect yourself and others.
This can’t be happening.
Did I hold my friends for long enough on
Dear Instagram, I am going crazy.
Dear Minecraft, please keep me company.
Dear Hotmail, tell my best friend I miss her.
Dear Google, will a weighted blanket keep
me from going crazy?
Dear Amazon, send me masks and Purell
when you’re able.
Dear YouTube, stop sending me
advertisements for at-home workouts.
I’m lucky if I wake up with the energy to sit
up in bed.
“Mom says we can have a socially
But what’s the point?
I can’t cry into your shoulder and tell you
how much I miss you.
Besides, socializing will get me sick, and I
fear the air will burn me.
I want normal life back more than I’ve
wanted anything in my life.
We can meet within six feet in small groups
I’m conflicted. I miss my friends so much,
but I don’t want to get sick.
My mom told me that socializing would feel
like bitter medicine.
She was right.
I have a strong hiker’s knot stuck in the pit
of my stomach
That pulls on my lungs and goes
everywhere with me.
I can’t put it down.
The schools are opening.
I don’t want to get sick. I don’t want to flunk
out of school.
I’ll … start homeschooling? I’ll invest in it.
Everything will be OK.
Everything is not OK.
If everyone’s wearing masks it’ll be fine,
I can do it, I think. I can go back to school.
Oh, god, no I can’t. I can’t do it.
One in 10 Canadians live with a disability.
One in six people who get COVID have
Why am I the only one wearing a mask?
Why did they get rid of the mask mandate?
Does the government care about us?
Does anybody care anymore?
I can leave the house now, but
That feeling of isolation remains.