Being a Solo Shopper Post Covid

Today has been a test of my ability to maintain a positive outlook. I am trying so hard. I woke up and wrote out what I am grateful for in my life. I put a smile on my face and decided to start my day with an iced mocha and then come home and get to work!

The Universe had different plans. First, my car was blocked in. (Insert deep sigh)… I had to have a talk with my neighbor and wait for someone to come move the giant trailer blocking me in. I’m not going to spend time going into details, lets just call the whole situation unpleasant.

Okay, I escape the driveway! Time to find coffee, I get my iced mocha and decide to drive over to the car shop to get an oil change, they don’t have an early appointment so I go ahead and schedule for later in the day. Long story short, I got scheduled for the wrong location and we’ll just call it a scratch and move along. Try again next week.

Next, I’m going to run over to Ikea and get the pegboard accessories and table legs I need for the new craft room. Hmm, there’s a line. A seven lanes of people line. I thought to myself, it’s okay, I have time to stand in this line, no biggie. I put on an audiobook, popped in my earbuds and got my butt in line.

It was a pretty peaceful process, I mean it took close to an hour and I had to pee really badly!!! But, all and all it was fine. I was people watching and felt a little sad watching other couples hold hands and chat in line… there were not many of us alone. Most were couples or families. I imagined what it would be like if Robert had been there with me.

My first thought is he wouldn’t have stood in this line. I would have automatically said let’s just leave because I wouldn’t have wanted to upset him by expecting him to stand in the line. I recalled though that sometimes he would surprise me with his reaction to things and he may have actually said “we’re here already, let’s just get in line”… sometimes he was perfectly lovely and laid back, other times he would berate me for expecting him to do the simplest of things.

That’s the whole piece of the abuse that broke me though. The constant fear and anxiety of not knowing which reaction he was going to have. Was he going to hug me and love me or tell me to stay out of his space and ignore me for days on end… I never knew. Either could happen for no apparent reason. It made me feel insane.

Now here I am, alone. No one to stress me out, no one to make me feel loved. Just me. The solo shopper in the Ikea line. In every line. Will it be forever? I don’t know. I just know this is what my life looks like right now, and while it’s not what I want, it’s okay. It’s safe and it’s peaceful and my heart and soul need that. I need time to heal.

I walked around the store, I waited in two different lines for assistance, I left empty handed as they were out of my items. It took forever to get back to the main road and past the traffic, this whole process taking over 3 hours. But I was finally headed home, I stopped and picked up lunch for my son and I, I got home and had to park at the top of the street because my driveway is once again blocked… I dropped the drinks, not once but twice getting out of the car… I took a deep breath and I made it inside.

In my head I heard my voice repeating over and over, be positive, it’s okay, just breathe and let it go! Then I get a message from DD2 that one of the grandchildren had peed into her hands at the park today during a panicked potty mishap and I laughed out loud. For all I dealt with today, no one dared pee in my hands! So I guess my day wasn’t so bad after all.