Latest Blog: Living At Distance #istayhomefor

How is everyone? 

Are we all coping with this rude interruption in proceedings?

In our house, we are all safe and healthy. We have been enjoying the easier pace of life that Covid-19 has brought and we are fairly keeping up with schoolwork, work-work, exercise, etc and staying ahead of the boredom; so far, so good.

Obviously, things are not so good for The Fox & Bean - we've had to shut until further notice. No income so no way to pay salaries of our amazing staff, nevermind rent and so on. No classes to gather people, no events, no sales of products made by local artists or food from local suppliers. All systems frozen, no one passes GO.

In many ways, this sudden wrench to daily life feels like a personal loss and I think I've been working my way through the five stages of loss in various fits and starts.

Denial: although there has been coverage of Covid-19/Corona for several months, it was far away and lockdowns seemed to be working.  But as it was spotted increasingly closer and there seemed to be no stopping it, the time came to deal with it - the doors had to be shut.

I think I moved to Depression at this point, with major financial stress, and also massive disappointment as things had been finally picking up after a long winter.  But I decided I would use this time to assess the business - something good should come of this, if we could refine, refocus and reenergise; Bargaining. 

Then I started hearing reports that a portion of the population didn't seem to believe how serious this is - they resented being dictated to, their freedoms being unnecessarily removed.  And that's when the Fear kicked in: if so many people were refusing to distance and isolate, then that meant there was a far higher risk of anyone I met having the virus. It meant I had to assume that anyone outside our household had the virus.

Then Anger rocked into the party. How could people be so cavalier? So callous? Contrary to what they argued, their decisions were not their own - they affected every other person in geographic reach - how incredibly dare they??!

The Fear grew. I didn't realise just how much it grew until I had to do a grocery run yesterday. I had it all planned out: gloves, trolley coin, mental route around the shops and back home. I found my heart racing as I tried to stay away from other shoppers and it seemed the longest time until everything was dropped off and done. Once home, I realised I was in a sweat so I stopped and, suddenly, I found myself crying.  Crying? Nothing bad had actually happened but I was mush.  

It must have been the moment that I realised how scared I was in this alien landscape we now live in. Hyper-alert to everyone I am exposed to, ultra-vigilant of any coughs by my darling kids and husband. Without realising it, I have been a violin string becoming more taut with each screwturn of the news and each piece of advice and information popping up on my phone. 

Our doctors and nurses are the front line in this war, including my brother and some very good friends. I am so scared for them, for what they will have to deal with, what they will see. I am terrified they will contract the virus and not be able to recover with viral overload from such exposure. I am scared for their families, for my parents, my in-laws, my wider family.  I am scared for friends with underlying conditions, for friends with children with underlying conditions - it's all gut-wrenching.

Kevin Bacon, Hollywood legend and instigator of the 6-Degrees-of-Separation theory, is using his power for good by launching the social media campaign #istayhomefor - the idea being that you say who you are staying home to support, which makes it very real and very close, and so only those who are out working are those who absolutely have to be. Elton John, Emma Watson, all the glitterati are at it, as is pretty much all of social media, so I'll happily play along:

#istayhomefor my husband and children, my friends, the hero doctor & nurse front-liners and for all who occupy this part of the world with me.

I love humankind and I hope we will all emerge from this ordeal simplified and calmer, having learned to appreciate the good things we have, realisation of how we can improve our lives and the wisdom to know what we can and cannot control. And with a deep love for our fellow man, woman and child. 

Acceptance.

Stay at home and take care of yourselves.

My love to you all.

FF

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