It's an odd quirk of human nature that we are sometimes hard to please. And after three weeks of working at home, I find myself already passing that point.
It's the never-ending battle of having to work or doing things outside when you are restricted to working from home. Although those of us who deal with the public on a daily basis sometimes become frustrated, the actual realization that you really like people is a hard fact to face when you are home alone.
That inability to do the things we are accustomed to doing and the strict recommendations for social distancing have prohibited the lifestyles of most people across the United States as this deadly virus spreads across our nation. We all wish we could be at home when we are at work - until we have to work from home and never have interactions with human beings outside our immediate household.
But despite the frustration and boredom that is defining this isolation period, there have been some positive aspects of this social distancing. There are positives to working at home. I've already counted some savings in gas usage and costs of lunches. Of course, that money has just been going back into the household grocery budget - which is expanding almost as fast as my work-at-home waistline. I can work in my pajamas or sweat pants and sweat shirt, I don't have to spend an hour every morning trying to fix my hair and put on makeup. There's a substantial savings in time and money on that aspect!
Isolation from public gatherings result in more use of social media and telephones as a means to contact and check on family and friends - after you've put in your required work time. It also allows most women to think all day about what is for supper that night - and getting a head start on a regular meal time. Ironically enough, I still find it odd - but fittingly appropriate - that churches and schools are closed but liquor stores still offer drive-through service.
Those of us who have been at home over the past few weeks may have even taken a new outlook on cleaning and organizing. A few of those include the recent discoveries of my own life:
1. Unless I have drastic weight gain/loss, I probably will never need to buy another pair of jeans.
2. It is easier to trim bushes than it is to pick up and dispose of all the limbs.
3. A riding lawn mower traveling over rain saturated ground will spin and get stuck if you don't apply four-wheeling techniques - quickly.
4. Sunshine is a rare commodity in southeastern Kentucky these days and we should soak up every opportunity to enjoy it when we have it.
5. Grape hyacinths, properly known as muscari, make great borders and fillers for flower beds but they will spread everywhere into your yard as well.
6. Technology is wonderful, but reading the newspaper online will never measure up to the "hard copy" printed version. Subscribe today!
7. Unwanted newspaper makes a great ground cover to defer weed growth.
8. You get tired of dealing with people until you aren't supposed to be around people.
9. Being at home is only desirable when you are supposed to be at work.
10. My garden has become a swamp.
11. Although most clothing and accessory stores have closed due to the COVID-19 outbreak, we still have Walmart!
12. I don't care if Stephen Colbert is live, from a remote location or live audience recorded - I still don't like him!
A lifestyle change is often difficult to deal with, but we must take the necessary steps to protect ourselves and others. Be safe, Laurel County! And God Bless America!
Nita Johnson is a staff writer at The Sentinel-Echo. You can contact her at email@example.com.