I’ve lost count of how many days it’s been since I left the house. I feel I should have started a tally carved into the wall like a prisoner marking the days until release.
Leave my mark. A piece of history.
It’s what we’re living right now. History. I know every yesterday is the past. But what’s happening right now will be spoken about for years.
It will also probably feel like years.
I feel isolation is something disability has prepared me for. I for once have an advantage. Although not if I catch the thing.
I’ve learned that cancelling plans happens. I know what it’s like to have restrictions on where you can go and what you can do.
I was born to be adaptable.
I have always had a fear of germs and that feeling of dread when a person around me coughs.
I rely on other peoples cleanliness.
I’m one of those people that got the 12 week self isolation letter, and I have to say it’s currently going alright. I talk to my cats, but that’s nothing new. I haven’t started pacing yet, what a novelty that would be.
As someone that’s got quite used to filling the hours and enjoying the can do’s in life, here’s my plan.
I’m crafting my way through life right now
The 100 Day Project came at just the right time for me. I’d said in my aims this year that I hope to take part. Well what else have I got to do now anyway.
I’m somebody that has to have busy hands. They may not move well, but when my brain isn’t working and my fingers need to, I craft.
I started slightly early as I’d finished my previous project, and we all know I’m a little slow when it comes to the physical stuff.
I decided for these 100 days (which may turn into many more if I continue through self isolation) I would create a patchwork of sorts from cross stitch squares. One per day. Ish.
Now’s the time to catch up on that TBR pile
Reading is something I do almost daily anyway. It’s a great way to escape life’s stuffs. When I find a good book I become so involved that often their issues can take up more of my mind than my own.
In the past month I finished reading ‘I Spy’ by Claire Kendal. A thriller in which a failed MI5 applicant accidentally becomes a spy in her relationship.
I also enjoyed reading blogging friend Ritu Bhathal’s novel ‘Marriage Unarranged’. I’ve always wanted to visit India but know that’s extremely unlikely. This romantic comedy filled with culture and atmosphere made me feel as if I have experienced a glimpse of what it would be like traveling with friends.
Currently I’m listening to The Dutch House by Ann Patchett, narrated by Tom Hanks. Can you get a more comforting voice? Well maybe Morgan Freeman.
Next on the list, this months book club read is The Family Upstairs by Lisa Jewel.
What have you been reading lately?
The little moments matter
I’ve always been a fan of the small things (unless it’s slices of cake), the moments that make up a life. A truly tasty cup of tea. The sun staying out later each day. My cat stretching and looking content.
When life gets small, these things stand out even more. You learn to appreciate what’s around you and get excited by your favourite chocolate, this massive rise of your toad in the hole, or making flapjacks from cupboard ingredients.
Get on the mindless mindfulness
I’m all too guilty of scrolling through Facebook, Twitter and news websites way too much. At the beginning of all this Covid-19 stuff, when numbers were still shocking and I still had a slither of hope that the government may be forward thinking, I was checking for updates I don’t know how many times a day.
This wasn’t good for me or anyone else, and the only thing it was achieving was more fear. We knew the facts, we knew what we had to do to play our part and we knew nobody was safe. I cut my ‘news updates’ to twice daily and now they are sometimes less than once.
I’m not in denial or blocking it out. My phone still flashes up with headlines that I sometimes choose not to open.
It’s like a new way of living, a new acceptance. And that’s scary.
When thoughts creep up or news flashes rattle me I try to change my focus. The crafting and reading are good for that but there are other quick fixes too.
Rather than opening that news or Facebook app I’ve put others on my home screen. Colouring by numbers, sudoku and word search. I’ve been having a weekly quiz with friends too, so will open that and soon get caught up in it.
Am I more connected now than ever
I Zoomed. Yes you read that correctly. I had an actual Zoom meeting with real life friends in their own homes. And I got it working and didn’t get cut off.
It was a tea and cake chat in the mid afternoon, because that’s the kind of people my friends and I are.
A lovely catch up it was. The highlight though… seeing all their houses. Why did I not think of this before?! I don’t get to visit friends often, the main reason being I can’t get in. They’d all seen my house before, and now I can see theirs.
I’ve read articles and posts about lockdown being a more accessible world for those with physical disabilities. Putting us all on an equal par. Working from home becoming acceptable, nobody going on beaches, everyone turned away from the restaurants.
Catch up on those unseen films
Because Netflix alone has way too much content to get me through isolation I decided to add to that pile by subscribing to Sky Cinema via NowTv. They sent me an offer too good to refuse and I thought ‘hell, its unlikely I’ll be visiting the cinema this year, I haven’t yet made it there since I had flu in January, and I do love going to the cinema’ and paid up.
Browsing through endless genres I came across The Bodyguard. The 1992 film, not the 2018 series.
I know it’s a shocker because this kind of film is right up my street, but I hadn’t seen it. Or the live stage show, of which I must now see.
I was not about to let Coronavirus get me before I’d seen The Bodyguard, and so I watched and loved it.
I may now work my way through a Covid inspired movie bucket list, so if you know of any I should watch do let me know.
Being in the outside
I need to do more of this one myself. As we’ve discovered I’m someone that always has to be doing something. Not necessarily useful. I just can’t sit doing nothing. If there’s no reason to go outside, then I tend to sit inside. Doing my crafts, writing notes and blogs, making lists. All while watching Netflix.
This week though I’ve decided to eat lunch outside when it’s warm enough. I’m a cold being so that may not be as often as it should be. This weekend the sun was shining though and no breeze was to be felt. I even sat in the gardening pondering for a while after finishing my lunch.
This might seem like a bizarre concept right now when all our current plans are being cancelled or postponed. I had many shows booked including Les Misérable, Rob Beckett, Derren Brown, The Killers and Green Day, all of which have been cancelled, postponed, or I’m expecting them to be. But it’s the short term ones I’m focusing on. Small aims. Have lunch in the garden Saturday. Sort out the wardrobe Monday. FaceTime and a cuppa with the girls Wednesday. Bake scones Thursday.
It always helps to have something to look forward to, and right now those little things are what we have.
I’m a stickler for it and always have been. Whether due to my disability and always needing to plan ahead, having set times for waking up and going out, or if it’s just built in me, we will never know.
Not having any outdoor plans and appointments doesn’t mean I’ve changed my routine at all. I find it helps to keep structure to the day. Waking, eating and sleeping at regular times. Getting dressed daily. Deciding to clean in the morning, watch a film in the afternoon. It stops everything blending into one.
I even straightened my hair once and had proper shoes on.
For most, lockdown and isolation will only be for a few weeks. There’s plenty of stuff you can fill that time with that doesn’t put yourself and others at risk.
So stay safe, stay home, and read my friends poem.