Ok, hear me out. Before I get into this I need to make a disclaimer. I’m excited for a haircut, to catch up with my nail technician and have my nails done, to be on the first flight home whilst simultaneously being in the pub with friends. I want to go to a gym class and have someone shouting at me to work harder (without the option to fall down on my sofa mid-session), I want to refuel with brunch and a coffee before having another coffee and cake with a side of people watching just because I can. I want met up with a friend and just walk. I want a pint. I want to leave the office on a Friday with the buzzy Friday feeling and nip into Primark on the way past! I can’t wait to go home and see my family, cuddle my godson, hug my friends, go to my favourite restaurant and nip to the shop for a bar of chocolate without having to justify if it really is essential but if I’m being totally honest… I’ve enjoyed lockdown!
Lockdown, for me, has been a slower pace of life, it been kindness, it’s been compassion. It’s been looking out for those who need help. It’s been getting creative online, it’s been pursuing hobbies I usually don’t have time for and it’s been sleeping late on the weekend without feeling like you’re wasting the day! It’s been appreciating the roof over my head, the food in my fridge, my ability to exercise, walk and pick up groceries. It’s been appreciating my health and the health of my family and friends. It’s been checking up on people but also turning my phone off when I don’t feel like chatting. It’s been quality time with my boyfriend which week in, week out we generally don’t make time for because ‘we live together’, duh? It’s been making the hours in the day count and making time spent inside enjoyable. It’s been catching up with family that I don’t always see and it’s been making dinner alongside my brother and sister via facetime. It’s been exploring new ideas for date night, cooking and enjoying new cuisines from the comfort of my own kitchen. It’s been realising who I genuinely miss in my day to day life and connecting with neighbours I usually only see through tired eyes on my way to work.
It’s been fun.
It seems that before covid-19 swept across the globe life was go, go, go and very little no, no, no. Everyday getting a little faster than the last. We were all cursed with the inability to decline when asked to a certain event, birthday or dinner. Surely it’s manageable to fit in a dinner before meeting friends for drinks under the illusion that you would make it home after one glass of wine so you wouldn’t be too rough for that gym class you’ve already booked into the following morning… a thread of thoughts that commonly swam around my head pre-lockdown. We were in competition with ourselves to keep up with ourselves. Ourselves getting more and more exhausted as the days ticked past. I often said, ‘if only I had two weeks to do nothing’! Life was moving at an unsustainable pace and it was coming to a crescendo.
We have been forced to think about life in a brand new way. A way not known to the majority. Need has developed a whole new meaning. In January of this year I needed abs, a lifetime of savings, a new summer wardrobe and a miraculous upgrade to business class as I had just booked flights to Bali. A week after booking the perfect, Instagram worthy accommodation it was pulled from under me and the only thing I needed was my health and the promise of a secure job. I needed a safe home to endure lock down and I needed to contact neighbours in case they needed a little help day to day. Funny that I no longer needed the contents of my ASOS saved items…
I’ll be grateful to have my freedom back and for the pressure on key workers to be lifted but there are definitely a few things I wouldn’t mind hanging around.
– Friends connecting via home baked good getting delivered to doorsteps,
– Kindness of strangers and the community spirit that is subconsciously carrying us along along,
– Road rage at an all-time low, no one is rushing to be anywhere!
– Finding small wins! There is anyways something to smile about ☺️
– Appreciation of those doing jobs we couldn’t survive without, we marvelled at the technology of contactless shopping and self service checkouts but hats off to those stacking shelves every day as a never ending line of people snake around the building waiting to get inside,
– The initiates of independent business owners, grafting and surviving against all odds,
– The support of locals to shout about and back independents,
– The feeling of community when we connect at 8pm on a Thursday night 👏🏻
– And the smile from a stranger on the street as they pass you on their daily walk!
We’ll all remember this for as long as we live and hopefully will never have to endure it again. Let’s take the wee bits we enjoyed and carry them with us to make the world a nicer place to live in. I definitely don’t speak for myself when I say this has shown us that we really never know what tomorrow will bring!