Living Alone during a Pandemic

December 17-18, 2021

I haven’t done a blog in a LONG time.  It’s nearly x-mas…and I’m a Jew, so x-mas isn’t my favorite time. Don’t get me wrong.  I love seeing x-mas trees.  But the capitalism of x-mas is way too much for me.  Too many commercials with stuff to buy.  And Chanukah is NOT the jewish x-mas. Here where I live (in a mostly non-Jewish community) we did celebrate Chanukah and it was lovely.  We lit candles in our lobby and many of my neighbors (mostly non-Jews) came down to participate because there’s not much else to do these days with the pandemic.  We did the blessing, then had to blow out the candles in the lobby and off we all went back to our apartments.  I came back upstairs and lit my own Chanukah candles and did the blessing, and even made latkes one night.  It was nice, but doing it alone isn’t really great fun.

X-mas is supposed to be spiritual, not about stuff.  Right?  You could have fooled me. I have a few neighbors who are spiritual human beings, and I know that they do x-mas not as a capitalist endeavor.   I have TV on too much these days, and all I see are commercials for x-mas presents.   BUY STUFF.  Non-stop.  With this new omicron variant alive and well…I’m indoors too much. To throw out the garbage about 20 feet away in my apartment building,  I put on my damn mask.  There’s covid where I live…too close to home.  As my newsletter says, I’ve been boostered…but that might not be enough these days.  

I remain a lonely single dyke.  It’s harder at holidays.  Pat is alive, and surviving at 82. I’ll probably see her around x-mas.  Not to celebrate, just to see her.  She still smiles when she sees me, so I’m not complaining.  When my mother died, she had alzheimer’s and she was one nasty old lady. I think she drove my father off the deep end.  He died first, and she followed soon after. Both lived to almost 90, so I guess it’s in the cards that I’ll live for quite a while yet…hopefully without alzheimer’s.   I have vascular dementia…not good blood flow to my brain, so I am forgetful.  I hope I don’t become a nasty old lady.  (I hope that’s not going to happen to me.) I take incredible notes on everything, so I don’t forget.  You should see my date book. It’s really hard to read. But I haven’t forgotten anything major.  I saw my family doctor (Dr Pam) last week.  She read the report done by a neuro doc recently about my memory. He said I’m not losing a ton more memory.  That’s good news, even though I feel like I am always losing more memory.  Dr Pam said I was the only healthy patient she saw last week that was “healthy.”

I’m writing this blog on the day that my new Chef for Seniors, Adi,  is here cooking me my meals.  Sadie old lady cat is hanging out hoping for leftovers.  I’ll have some good meals soon for the next two weeks.  

It’s hard writing these days because I don’t have a publisher for my memoir.  Hard to keep writing.  I’ll keep trying, but it is hard.  bell hooks just died, the wonderful feminist writer, at 69.  I sure would like to finish my book before I kick the bucket.  Not as a legacy, but as something I want/need to write before I’m done. Losing  bell hooks (AKA Gloria Watkins) was hard.  Like losing Gloria Anzaldua several years ago.  Yes, we have their words, but we don’t have them anymore.

I guess that’s why I haven’t done a blog in forever.  It’s hard writing. Period.  

So, the lonely dyke thing.  I really want to have some more intimacy in my life.  More than the many good friends I do have (and love) in my life, both where I live and long distance.  Zoom doesn’t quite cut it.  Disembodied people on the screen isn’t intimate. You can’t touch someone on the damn screen.   And I have too many damn zoom talks.   I’m still young enough to think about sex. Amazing at age 70.  I don’t want a wife.  But I’d love a once-in-awhile dyke to “play” with.  The dykes where I live all have partners. They are lovely women but they have girlfriends.  Socializing? Ha!  I used to meet women doing political work, but anything I do political now is on zoom.  I haven’t gone to any demonstrations in forever.  It’s not like I don’t want to do that, but it’s a little scary when you are 70.  I don’t want to be arrested by cops or pushed around.  I don’t want to become another Mr. George Floyd.  I lived in Minneapolis near where Mr. Floyd was killed by the cops, so I’m familiar with police and violence.  Yes, there are good cops. They are not all bad, I know that.  I’m white so it is less likely that a cop would hurt me, but cops aren’t the most gentle people, even if you are white.  I miss going to demos, but I just don’t want to risk it.  

I wish I had more “stuff” to do in my life.  But it’s winter here and the snow is scary for me.  I’m a person with “three legs” – two actual legs and my cane.  I have lots of new body parts – two knees, two shoulders and one hip that I wasn’t born with – bionic Lisa.   I hope I don’t have to get any other new parts.  So far, I’m holding up.  I’m really careful on the ice and snow. I have a one cane just for the winter – I can flip a piece on the bottom, and VOILA, it has a part that digs into the ice, so I’m a little safer.  

So back to my writing.  I did a holiday newsletter last year.  When Pat was my healthy partner, she was a graphic designer, and she made us a beautiful newsletter.  I’m not so skilled graphically, so now I’m on Volume 2 of my holiday newsletter.  It’s a long letter to all my Beloveds here and long distance…as far away as Chile and England.  It would be much more fun if I didn’t write my newsletter as this lonely single dyke.  Such is life.  I’m looking…but no luck. And as I say to everyone…find me a nice dyke without a lot of drama in her life.  I don’t want to live with her or marry her…I just want a little more intimacy in my life.  I’ve tried some of these lesbian dating sites.  They are not fun.  You write a profile about yourself, and I’ve said clearly that I’m “old,” wanting to meet someone my age, not wanting to jump into bed ASAP, etc. etc.  I get responses from these young dykes who want to have sex with me…even though in my profile, I say that’s not what I want.  I am not going to educate some young dykes about being an old dyke.  Where do you find dykes your age locally?  HELP!!!!  Having a fantasy life is not real.

I’ve taken on projects that keep me going.  I’ve been doing an intergenerational GLBTQ puppet camp!  It’s lovely.  But it’s ending soon.  I’m also in a cohort of “caregivers,” for people with Alzheimer’s.  We zoom regularly and are working on doing political advocacy for people with memory loss.  It is through Caregiving Across Generations.

Zoom is another story.  Of course, it’s how we live in the world now, given we have access, which not everyone has.  I hate talking to disembodied beings online.  I miss human touch. Period.  If there’s a theme to this blog…it’s living alone as a 70 year old single lesbian during a never-ending pandemic. Enough for now.  Blessings to the people who read this.

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