With the current government enforcement, ensuring we all stay in and only leave the house for essential travel, food and work (where absolutely necessary). It has turned our world upside down, it is scary, uncertain and is no doubt making you very anxious.
I too have felt all these feelings, I think it makes it worse that we don't quite know when it is all going to end and when will we have some 'normality' back and our much loved (but often taken for granted) routine.
So it got me thinking, that actually can we shine some positivity on this, is there a silver lining, could some good actually come from all this uncertainty? ... for me I would say, YES! Previous to this we were all victim to spending the days rushing from place to place, work, school runs, evening classes and clubs. Weekends would fly by as we try to cram in as many activities as possible, we would spend a fortune on going out and taking the kids to 'exiting' new commercial places.
When come to think of it, we had everything we needed right here. The only thing missing, yes I would agree is the self isolation from family and loved ones outside of our own home, but my goodness, don't we appreciate FaceTime, Houseparty and Zoom! a whole lot more now.
I'm going to write a list of all the things I am doing differently, all the things I miss and now appreciate a whole lot more, oh! and a list of the things I will do differently on the other side of this...
THINGS I MISS, BUT APPRECIATE MORE NOW!
· Mum, Dad & family (a lot)
· Asda, click and collect slots being widely available (or home delivery for that matter)
· Being able to nip to any shop, any time and get anything I need (I ran out of deodorant this morning, supermarkets don't stock the one I like :()
· Socialising - human interaction, my husband and children are great, but come on we all need a slightly wider circle
· SCHOOL - just school and everything about school, teachers we salute you!
· Going to work, treating and meeting new (and old) clients - work is a huge part of my life, my heart and soul is in that place, closing the doors for the last time before we got told to stay closed, broke me slightly, but I know when we open up again, I will LOVE it more than ever.
· Staff - I have the most wonderful team, and they have all supported me through this, thank you for WhatsApp group chats, they have kept me alive!
· Weddings - these are a big part of our job at Wyresdale Park, prepping the brides for their big days. Weddings have been put on hold for now and my heart breaks for all those that have had to delay special days, but you can't cancel love and all will be resumed on the other side of this.
· Food - being readily available, at the touch of a button (shopping online) or just being on the shelves in the supermarkets.
· Driving - weird as it sounds, driving to and from work, or even as a mum just driving to the supermarket and back in peace was always a much needed release and down time. I know we are still able to drive, but following the guidance it now doesn't quite feel the same. It is also a very weird experience when you do go out on the road because it is so quiet, it's nice but it's just not the 'norm' and it's just another reminder.
THINGS I AM DOING NOW THAT I DIDN'T BEFORE (SOME OF WHICH I WILL CONTINUE ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THIS)
· Food - we are NOT wasting food, at all! It is all getting used. Whether we eat the same meal for a couple of nights, freeze the left overs or make a soup up from the remains, it is all getting used and most certainly something we will be continuing.
· Sourcing local - I always thought I was ok at this, I only buy British for my shops and website, and where possible supporting local suppliers in their own ventures. But now I am ordering food from local farmers - we got a wonderful big box of local produce the other day, it was super duper fresh and yummy! I have always supported the milkman and had glass bottles delivered, but now more than ever is it important to shop local and get things delivered to your doorstep.
· Home Schooling - it's tough! with the distraction home offers, getting Ted (7, almost) to focus like he would (or perhaps not) in class is hard, I have tried structuring the day, making it laid back - and either option is hard, but when it comes to it I think the main thing is we are all trying our best. In fact they are probably learning different things now, like how to help tidy, make things in the kitchen and play on their own sometimes (never before was Ted very good at this) I've decided not to fret too much about the schooling now, the teachers are amazing and when we are all back to routine they will help to make sure everything is all back on track.
· Walks - we get an allowance when it comes to getting out and about, and getting out for some exercise once a day (still social distancing) has never felt so good. I've never appreciated a walk like it, we have a wonderful world on our doorstep, and although we did venture out most weekends before, getting out daily and finding some new routes is so refreshing. We have a little stream and sweet man made beach just behind us and pottering around down there on our own is just perfect.
· Time for me! Well, there isn't much of it anymore there is no rest bite. Schools out, there are no childminders in action for the younger one, so all day every day is mummy/daddy day care. The time from waking up until bedtime seems long, making me evermore appreciative of the time I get to myself, a long bath, reading before bed, making tea, doing a nice facial routine (instead of rushing through it). Writing in my blog!
· What is ESSENTIAL? - this is sometimes a grey area, and this time has definitely made me see what is actually essential in life; health, good friends, loving family, food supplies (but not to over indulge) We don't need surplus material tokens or 'things', we don't need an abundance of clothes or bags or shoes. We don't need expensive day trips out, we don't need fancy restaurants, although these things are nice, they aren't a necessity and we have learnt we are happy just as we are.
So, I absolutely feel like this is a list I will keep adding to over this time, having come only a few weeks into this period, there may even be a time of reflection at the end, where we look back and see what we have learnt.
Yes, it is hard, and stressful and our anxiety levels are through the roof, but there are quite a few moments of joy to be had in all of this. We should stop and slow down. See and actually look, hear and properly listen, smell, touch and grow. Grow as humans, mums, dads, 'teachers', learn to work without any prompt in our own space. In our own space that has now become our sanctuary, our safe place, where we look after and nurture the ones we love.
The world as we knew it will never be the same again, but for me; I think it could, quite possibly be for the goodness of each of us. The making of mankind.