COVID-19 Lockdown Lookback: Returning to Work, Thoughts & Feelings
Quite a different one for you all this week, I guess now I've decided that I'll update this blog once a week, huh. I was originally going to stick to my usual content (typical stuff I'd find interesting, that sort of thing) and I did actually have a whole post planned and written (which will be coming next week now), but I thought speaking about things that are actually happening in my life right now take priority.
I'm sure all of us are pretty much over lockdown and we just want everything back to normal, I know I have for a hot minute, there really are only so many TikToks you can watch before that gets boring. But anyway, I've had the news that I'm actually returning to work this week, so I thought I'd sit down and actually have a full reflection of the lockdown and how I've really been dealing with it all, because it really isn't all nice and easy like you see over on my Instagram. This one might be a bit of a long one, so go get a cuppa or somethin', there's no real order or plan for this one, so I'm just going to answer and talk about the points I've written.
RETURNING TO WORK
Now I really can only speak for myself, and I know everyone is different, but I am actually beyond excited to go back to work. I know I know, who would have thought it, we've all wished for paid leave to do nothing at some point and we got just that, but we just got a few shitty conditions to go with it. But after seeing my co-workers and customers every week since October to not seeing anyone at all for 3 months is a drastic change, and my work is a big part of my routine and I do struggle without one, so this is the biggest sense of normality for me. I do think I am a bit nervous to get back to work, but I think it'll pass when I actually get there, I'm just looking forward to things changing again and for the better this time. This is the longest amount of time I've ever had off since before I started working at 16. Don't get me wrong, I'm not naive to the idea of a second peak, but I'm just trying my best to keep things as normal as they can be for myself.
LOCKDOWN GETS PROGRESSIVELY HARDER TO DEAL WITH
At the beginning of lockdown, I really saw it as a break away from everyday life, but I really didn't expect it to go on for almost 3 months. During the first 3 weeks, I told myself there would be another 2 weeks of lockdown afterwards and then everything would return to normal, and I was genuinely finding the whole situation fine during the first part of lockdown. I had a lot of distractions, mainly baking (some of which has been shown here!). But, hearing 3 more weeks and then the words 'indefinite' threw me sideways, I'm sure my family will vouch for me when I say I found the weeks that followed pretty difficult. I spent a lot of the time sulking and quite upset at the fact that nothing was changing and I was just getting downright frustrated with staying inside and even walking the dog didn't help because I was still stuck in the same area I had been for a month prior. The idea of lockdown was new at the beginning, so I was quite happy to adjust to the new rules, but then money worries (not that I really have any at the ripe age of 19) and worries about my family and job came into play, and everything went wrong for a little bit. But after my little wobble I felt fine, it really was a week of everything getting too much and then I just re-adapted to the situation, there are people more at risk and families that are suffering, the least I could do was suck it up and be thankful it hasn't directly affected my family.
THE MEDIA IS NOT YOUR FRIEND
Pretty hypocritical from me, isn't it - considering I'm doing PR and Digital Communications at university, so I do journalism and media as part of my degree. But the media is not your friend, nor are the politicians in charge of this situation. I really try and stay away from politics on here as well as in my life as I understand everyone has different opinions and I do believe that everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but this situation could have been handled completely differently. The media has been a base of propaganda and scaremongering throughout this virus, something myself and others are not thankful for. Since the virus has genuinely taken over all news outlets, adverts, and even television, those wanting a break from having lockdown and the Coronavirus shoved down their throats really haven't got one. I really feel for those shielding themselves and being stuck inside with just the television because they couldn't even leave the house to go on a walk.
NOTHING WILL BE THE SAME... FOR A WHILE
I remember the first time I went shopping since the social distance measures were put in place, I actually walked into the store with a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes. The supermarket security really did think they were the dog's bollocks at the start of this lockdown and they way I seen a few shout at members of the public for simply getting a trolley really upset me for some reason. I was truly naive to the situation and I didn't realise how serious it was until the measures were put into place. That was the first thing that gave me a serious wake-up call, because it was around me. When it's in a different country and not directly near you, it's often pushed to one side and that's exactly what I did. The entire virus was an 'out of sight, out of mind' situation for me. But whilst adjusting to a new normal hasn't been easy, I'm sure we will all get used to it over time and everything will become to feel a bit more familiar, especially with shops re-opening.
THE DIRECT EFFECTS ON MY UNI COURSE
I'm sure many of you are thinking that my course is mainly online based anyway, and I suppose you're right in a sense. But, there were group projects and collaborations with businesses that were scheduled to go ahead the day the university closed to students. So, that put all of us in a pretty tricky position and every campaign was canceled and not due to be re-scheduled. Obviously this had a massive impact on my modules and the plans that we had spent weeks creating and making sure everything was in order for, but that's just life. Things don't always go your way and that's fine. I'm not sure how my uni course will be directly affected next year, but I do know that I don't think I'd be able to do the entire second year online (like Cambridge University is doing), but if I have to, it's a case of sucking it up and getting on with it.
EVERY FEELING IS VALID
I know that I haven't been directly affected by Coronavirus and neither have my family, but every feeling is valid during this time, as it always is. It's completely fine to feel nervous or scared about the situation and what might happen in the coming months and just because you haven't dealt with COVID-19 itself, you have dealt with the effects of it and that can be just as hard. I think everyone has dealt with lockdown in their own way and everyone has done really well to get to where they are at the minute.
I think those are the main points of everything I thought and experienced during my time in lockdown, whilst I understand everyone is different, I do think that the insight into everyone else's experiences helps people deal with their own and see how many peoples are going through the same thing. I never thought I’d be writing a post like this, but I’m glad I’m getting some sort of normality back!
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all revenue made from this post will be donated to the George Floyd Memorial Fund along with an additional donation from myself.