People around the world are limiting social contact and social distancing.
Just like us.
No one is attending events, hitting bars, or flocking to large gatherings.
Neither were we.
Folks are self-isolating, staying from home, angling for remote work.
This is sounding familiar . . .
You’re adapting to a new normal.
But for autistic people, a lot of this is just normal-normal.
I’m not all that stressed about COVID-19 in general; while I’m prone to different stressors, my triggers are all more personal — and they’ve definitely been triggered in their personal effects on me. Work gets busy. Kids get cranky. It just snowed.
It doesn’t stop me from reading the commentary of the world, the tales of isolation, the struggles of distance, connection, being conscientious while close and yet far. The withdrawal from touch, seeing others, the new sensation of awkwardness in not shaking hands, hugging, or otherwise coming close.
But I’m feeling a stranger relief now.
Fewer visits, meetings, obligations. All the social readiness beyond work — it is no longer needed. No special reasons why I won’t be meeting people or entertaining others.
The playing field has leveled. More people can now empathize with me, and I with them. Remote work isn’t easy for many, but I find they’re in my boat now. Staying in on a Friday night? That’s an anomaly for many, but not for people like me.
But eventually, there will be a normal you all go back to.
But for those of us on The Life Autistic, have we ever really left?
The parties, bars, gatherings, nights out, hugs. It will ease its way back into the world. The torches of touch will be rekindled. We’ll have connected from afar, coming back together, connecting closer from hence.
You deserve this. You’ll need to go back.
We won’t be coming with you.