When I was a kid (and my Mom was a nurse), I was taught to "see" (really just think of or imagine) germs on things when I was sick.
So, for example, I remember being home sick from school with... whatever... bronchitis or something (because I remember one year I had it and so wasn't allowed out for Halloween which is like SO UNFAIR BECAUSE CANDY!!!!) and my Mom would set up a "sick bed" on the couch.
Meanwhile she'd be washing or airing out sheets and pillows from my bed, to get rid of the germs from there. (I say "germs" as a general term... and I always thought they were green, probably like that slime ghost thing from Ghostbusters)
Next to that sick bed on the couch, there'd be a plastic bag that tissues would go into, because you didn't want those tissues lying around with germs on them.... you wanted the germs contained in that bag. Etc etc. And Mom always taught us to try to avoid wiping our eyes/nose when we were sick because that would just be spreading the germs around and you didn't want them to get into your eyes/nose, etc.
So now with this virus.... I "see" it everywhere. We've been told from the start to wash our hands and avoid touching our face and on top of that my brain sees the "germs" everywhere. Which is.... honestly, exhausting. Because I know the virus is literally not everywhere, but caution suggests to act as if, and wash hands and avoid touching face and and and... sigh. I'm tired.
I think I've loosened up a bit over the last month or two... As in my place is probably pretty clean and virus free, or at least low probability, so I'm a little more relaxed around my place. I still wash my hands if I go check the mail or take garbage out or anything and I actually bought some handkerchiefs and I use them to open doors and things (it's my attempt to be a little more environmentally friendly than the gloves, but I have them too for things like getting gas, etc.) And so I tell myself that between my "avoid touch" fabric handkerchief and my washing hands once I'm back in my place and still trying to not touch my face.... I tell myself that I'm doing ok. Plus, I'm still, as far as I know (because who really knows...) I've stayed healthy this last while so... I'm doing ok.
But yeah, there is still a stressful feeling of a sense of everything being coated by those imagined green germs.... and everyone being sick and breathing out those green germs. It stresses me, for sure.
I hope to continue to be well, and I guess my Mom's childhood sickness protocols are a mixed blessing because it was easy for me to remember them, but it's also kind of tiring to think of them all the time, rather than just for a week home sick with bronchitis....
(Plus no one's here to carry me to bed like Dad would sometimes do!)