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My sober pandemic: Susan

April 27th, 2020 Interviews

patchwork, dog, susan with facemask on

“I’ve had some panic attacks in the grocery store and post office which is something I never experienced before.”



Susan: My feelings seem to shift daily – even hourly. I feel very privileged and grateful that my wife and I are financially secure and that I am still able to work from home. I am lucky to be living in Columbus, Ohio where our Governor and local officials are being reasonable and making science-based decisions. On the other hand – I worry about our elderly parents and how long this is going to last.

Susan: I was calmer in the beginning. The longer it drags on the more anxious I am becoming. I’ve had some anxiety (or panic) attacks in the grocery store and post office which is something I never experienced before. I am also getting more depressed as time goes on.

Susan: 7.5 years.

Susan: Ha ha! That’s a good one. I think being sober is allowing me to be more present and aware of my feelings. I think it is also helping me realize that this is something I have no control over.

Susan: Not really – I’m well aware of what a slippery slope that would be!

Susan: I have started working out with my personal trainer – outdoors, physical distancing. That gives me something to look forward to and takes the pressure off of me about when to exercise. I am walking daily with the dog and my wife. I also like to hand-stitch, so I have been doing a lot more of it.

Susan: Working from home, walking the dog, working in the yard, cleaning my own house, working-out with my trainer or on the back deck by myself, talking to the neighbors outside, playing Words with Friends, checking in on my mother regularly. I also end my day to listening to a Facebook LIVE concert by Melissa Etheridge. She is playing four songs every single day until the quarantine is over.

Susan: It’s a really tough time. I think it’s hard to envision not drinking if you are currently using it for “self-medicating”. On the other hand, it might be the best possible time to quit. All of the reasons that you’ve had for drinking up until COVID-19 are likely non-existent now – parties, work meet-ups, dinners out, etc. The only way you’re drinking now is alone or with whomever you are living with. It might be the best time to try “alcohol free”.

Susan: My hand stitching, Bailey (my dog), Me (in a mask), a Passion Flower (from my workplace: Passion Works Studio)

Susan: I hope everyone is staying healthy and staying home. We are truly “One World” during this time of crisis. Please know that the majority of Americans are good people and don’t support the racism, anti-immigration, and homophobic rhetoric that is coming from our national government.


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