Upon that fatal speech seven weeks ago, we all freefalled into a perpetual state of battening down the hatches and preparing for an unseen war. Our first thoughts were to food, cupboard essentials, and toiletries – things such as toilet rolls became rarer than gold and rubies. And, as Him and I work full time, all such essentials were cleared from the shelves whilst was brave ring away at the chalk face and he was moving furniture. Therefore, paying £2.50 for a bag of artisan penne pasta, and £3.00 for a bag of ‘wild rice’ was apparently very expensive. ‘You don’t do the food shopping and have no idea about how much things costs’ argued Him ‘And you shop in M and S and that should not be used as a guide’. Anyway, I do know that we reached a point where it was even difficult to buy the basics for egg/beans/tomatoes on toast – no matter the cost. A man nearly killed me with his death stare when I bought the last chicken in the butchers.
And then the panic was over.
All was quiet and all was still. And that’s when a new lockdown world opened up. Ingenious ways to communicate became the norm. So whilst we all ate very expensive pasta dishes and ate our chicken dinners guiltily, Zoom workouts and WhatsApp parties became en vogue. We all started to plan, dress and do our hair and make up to a ‘digitally ordained social life’.
Instead of having to be at a class, at work, or at a place for a certain time, I have found myself planning to be available for a ‘live lesson’, ‘live cook’ or a ‘live art club’, at the appointed time. And when that’s not enough, my social life extends to Thursdays, just before eight, when we shout neighbourly pleasantries and concern from house to house, before clapping for carers at eight.
But I must admit, it all gets too much. And I don’t want to be a mood breaker with all the awful news we keep hearing. However, these last couple of weeks have been tough. Also, the feeling of Groundhog Day grinding us down doesn’t help. With this endless boredom and without (whatever is said on Sunday), an end in sight. What do we do?
Some say it’s the perfect time to learn something new. TikTok seems to be a popular way to pass the time – if you like a dance! Along with (judging by the empty shelves Him tells me about in the supermarket) baking. It’s like the whole bloody world has gone banana bread mad! Maybe you’re learning a new language? A new skill? And if you’re not, are you getting through the to do list like us?
Him, being furloughed, is certainly getting all the jobs done! All the ones I can find him! Painting, gardening, cleaning (is it that day again, he asks?) seem to fill our days between my work and home schooling.
However, it’s important that explain my next thought. As I’m in the position I am, with sight-loss and always on the look out for new experiences and making memories, it’s important to me that 2020 isn’t a write off. This year needs to count and like all years in my precarious world, has to be a time for new adventures. Not all safely…
Firstly, we are so lucky living next to the sea. Secondly, RosieDog is even luckier as she gets to go out every day on the beach and run wild. The fact that we are bored means we have begun to vary our walk. All for a little of something different. All good, although every walk is an adventure when you live with nutters like me…Then this week the R Dog and I nearly become stranded between home and the dunes. A dead seal, an incoming tide and a wet dog later and we were free!
Then the biggie: Another new adventure is me having the actual time to write. My life and job mean I have limited time to write. My illness last year meant to didn’t have the energy. However, with a renewed vim and vigour, I’m now able to knock out a few words quite quickly (why get they’re any good…) The upshot of this is that I’m very excited that I’m making progress on something I’ve longed to do for a number of years. 20,000 words in and I’m feeling good about it and myself. Whether it’s shite, well that’s another story and one I’ll soon find out about! But it’s all part of my journey.
Lockdown hasn’t been easy. I’m not going to lie. However, I’ve been determined to continue my upwards journey of better mental health. And although some days (and nights) I’ve felt like it’s all going to fall apart. And some days that the weight of the world is on my chest, new adventures and experiences have stopped me from veering too much from my path.
I hope you’re all staying safe and well. Make room for your adventures: anything is possible xxxx