Sunday 26 July 2020

Coming out of Lockdown Anxiety

Anyone else have post lockdown anxiety? 

I haven't really joined the great race to normality yet and I'm not sure at what point I should? I know we're all going at our own pace at the moment and I really miss brunch with the girls, coffee shop dates alone and just a mooch around the shops with the little one but I'm also not there yet... I keep joking that I'll rejoin the world in 2021 - so far I've spent a couple of hours in a shopping centre and nipped to a coffee house for takeaway coffee but anything more than that seems too much right now. 

To be honest, I've been missing pre-covid life a lot recently and I feel very claustrophobic from doing the same mundane shit every day. I know we can shop, brunch blah blah but with Arran working from home, the little one and I come as a package and I just can't bring myself to take him anywhere like that yet. I feel like an idiot moaning about it because it could be worse and we're happy & safe but man am I craving a little normality. 

Our last day of normality was March 12th, it was when Covid cases first started to rise in the UK and everyone rushed to buy up all the toilet roll and antibacterial gel - it was also the week Yumnuts were launched and that was my real reason for heading into the city centre. 

Maybe I was a little naive but I was so surprised at how quiet it was, our local shopping centre was near on empty so I took full advantage and spent ages in Lush smelling bath bombs with Joshua and had a good ol' mooch around Zara and Flying Tiger before picking up some cakes and having a walk through the old town before ending up at my parents. 

Within ten days the country had plunged into lockdown, I'm not sure how you all felt but I was a little shell-shocked that it had happened. Sure, I was very pro lockdown but when it actually happened I was a little surprised and now here we here, four months later and it seems as though the UK has all but gone back to normal but I'm not ready. 

I've spoken a few times on how lockdown has given me the chance to re-access our lives, how busy we were and how much we were saying yes to things and we'll be taking this forward with us - the go slow life has been something we so desperately needed without even realising but already I'm finding I'll be sat there, the weather is dry and a little part of me will be like "Get up and do something, we're allowed now, it's sunny - you have no excuse to sit and do nothing". 

It's gonna take some getting used to!

I need to change my mindset a little more and forgive myself more for sometimes wanting to sit and just chill out with my family. 

With masks becoming mandatory - it's definitely helped my feelings about doing more normal things again. I don't drive so I always rely on public transport and knowing everyone will be wearing masks makes me feel more comfortable. My new life motto will be "mask up, wash hands and keep your distance!" going forward and I'm okay with that.

I'd quite like social distancing to stay forever, to be honest, but if lockdown has taught us anything, it's how selfish others can be. I sometimes wonder if that is what worries me the most, the fact that other people just don't care and rather than respectfully move out of the way or wear a mask - they'd rather be rude and argue. 

I think for the moment our lives will still look very different to what it did - you couldn't pay me to step into a soft play centre and we won't be spending evenings in restaurants or bars, heading to theme parks or even attending blog events yet but I'm also aware that could completely change again next month (apart from soft play - I hate soft play!). 

The morning I was going into the city centre for the first time I freaked out - I felt okay at first but as I got myself ready to leave the house - my hands felt clammy and I was on the verge of tears. It seems like such a big thing to do when previously it was something we did all the time. Afterwards, as I was sat in the sun with my sister it was as though a wash of relief went over me and I felt good for doing it. I needed to because I needed to see what it was like and the longer I put it off the longer I'd be building up a fear to do it. 

With each new step, I'll hopefully start to feel more confident but it's going to take some getting used to. At the moment our home lives haven't really changed - Arran is still working from home, as am I but that's no different for me and we still have Joshua home with us. He's due back at Pre-School in September but we'll be reaccessing that when the time comes. 

We've been very lucky that Joshua has handled lockdown and being home with just us so incredibly well but we both know he needs that normality, time with his friends and the chance to run wild too. 

It's been a big ol' learning curve for everyone but I'm hoping this is the beginning of the end. In the meantime, I'll just buy pretty masks to protect our family and stay cautious. 

You never know, we may be eating dinner out sooner than we think.

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