Writer’s Corner: Hanging on: How the Pandemic affected me

Writer’s Corner: Hanging on: How the Pandemic affected me
April 28
12:23 2021

By Cindy Argiento

The flip was switched. The lights went off. The darkness came and stayed. 

I thought it would be temporary. I thought I could handle it. The light at the end of the tunnel would come soon enough. The light didn’t come and the darkness became all encompassing. 

Being a writer is a solitary profession. I welcome and relish the quiet in order to write. Since I’m a writer and an introvert, I thought I would sail through the pandemic, unscathed. I thought wrong. I was angry when my ability to socialize was taken from me without my consent. I could no longer see the people I chose to help make the human connection in order to break up my solitude. 

How would I survive being cut off from the outside world? My answer – I would write. Writing has always been my salvation. Putting words to paper, no matter what my mood, has been my form of mental therapy. And so I wrote. 

Only, over time, as things became bleaker, words escaped me. I couldn’t think of words to write, nor did I care. My writing would not serve me now. I missed people. Like I crave chocolate, I craved people. When rational thought left me, I found myself jealous of people who worked outside the home because they had human contact, risks be damned. I wanted to be with others, not alone with my thoughts.

I wanted to be with and hear other people’s stories. I wanted to be free of this unforgiving and relentless prison of isolation. As a writer,I I’m used to being alone, but I had never felt utterly lonely untill now. I was headed toward the deep end of the pool without knowing how to swim. 

A year passed and then came the day I got my COVID vaccine. I felt like somebody tossed me a rope and I’m slowly emerging from the water. I called a friend (also vaccinated) and invited her to lunch. I look forward to hearing her stories. 

Even though it will be a slow process before we return to normal, I see a candle in the window. I have hope waiting for the day when all the lights are turned back on and my darkness is chased away. 

Until then, I’ll take it day by day and once again, one word at a time.

Cindy Argiento is a freelance columnist, public speaker and playwright. To contact, book her as a speaker, or read about her play “Stanley and Alice,” visit

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