Life in Lockdown

“Every day that I hear the words ‘lock down’ I’m going to swap them in my head to ‘look up’ so that every chance, I’ll look up at the sky, the birds, the bees, the occasional plane, the sun, the rain and the stars. I’ll ‘ lookup’ friends and families’ phone numbers more often in the coming days and weeks and give more people a call. I’d forgotten until this week just how good it feels instead of texting all the time”.        Carole Bent

How our lives have changed in the last six weeks?  Never have I heard and read the word ‘unprecedented’ used so often by so many. Unprecedented times it certainly is, as we all have had to adjust and adapt to a new way of living and working.

I recently read a post that I have quoted above and it resonated with me. I was inspired to consider what lockdown means for me. It got me thinking, what if I were to change the word lockdown to something else — something that sounds more positive and less restrictive. I know that I have definitely been doing much more ‘looking up’ as I find ways to stay connected to family and friends, become more observant of my immediate surroundings and check in with my wider, global friends and connections

Once the flurry of activity in the first two weeks of lockdown had settled and I had taken my yoga classes online  — life has been truly different. My life in lockdown has given me an opportunity. Firstly, it feels like a giant pause button has been pressed giving me the opportunity to slow down. Lockdown for me has become ‘slow down’. I have had and am having the opportunity to do the many things that I often feel I have little time for. I have been able to pause what is usually a busy, all-consuming schedule. This pause has resulted in giving me time — that thing that we often crave and that eludes us. 

I now know that lockdown has given me the precious gift of time.

I am in slow down. There is now time to read the collection of books by my bedside, time to tend my often neglected garden, time to practise the piano, take daily walks whilst breathing in my surroundings, observing and taking it all in and time to have regular virtual coffee dates with my friends — helping to stay connected. The biggest and only challenge of lockdown for me is having all my family living in different cities around the country and I am not in lockdown with any of them. But we make the best of this with plenty of virtual family chats knowing we are all safe in our homes

Life has been very different and many of us can choose how we spend the time we are being gifted — either yearning to get back to ‘normal’ or embracing and relishing the opportunity we now have to spend time doing things we would like to do, to reflect on what a new normal can be once we come through this and perhaps make more balanced life choices in the future. We know that in these few short weeks of global lockdown our planet is beginning to recover from so much of our overuse and abuse — the air is cleaner, the stars are brighter in our usually crowded cities and our world is less polluted – Mother Nature is thriving!

There is great sadness and loss around us, as lives are being shaken and taken by this pandemic. And in all this, there has been the opposite. We have seen great joy and happiness as people show up for each other with acts of kindness, immense support and love expressed in endless, heartwarming ways within families, communities, governments and in the wider world. I have found this hugely uplifting and touching. We truly are in this together and can achieve so much when we do stand together.

I have yet to feel stuck at home. If anything I feel safe at home and I hope this is the same for you all — wherever you are in lockdown. Stay safe, stay well, stay connected and enjoy this time you have to spend with yourself or your loved ones.

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