I’ve been on an emotional journey long before lockdown, to be honest I think deep down we all are all of the time because life is a rollercoaster, it’s not just a saying, it’s quoted by writers in books, lyricists in songs, it’s on poetry and plastered on memes and we’re all on a journey through it, handling our emotions as we go. Sometimes life bites us on the backside and gives us a downfall, trauma or lasting experience that takes a little longer to overcome and grow from.
Right now though, the world’s just a bit topsy turvy, we’re all struggling. All our lives have been impacted, we’re lot seeing friends and family, work life, work load, travel, holidays, events, everything have been turned upside down and inside out. It’s all strange and it’s effecting us all in many different ways. As a result we’ll all handle it differently.
I’ve been in contact with various friends and family over the past few weeks in various ways. All of us looking out for each other and sharing kind words, jokes and gifs to keep the morale going. Some have also gone quiet, deciding not to engage as much and that’s ok too. Sometimes talking and interacting doesn’t help. It’s so easy to think others are achieving more, coping better and being generally more motivated and happy.
Oh how wrong we all can be, the fact is that life right now is about survival. We’ve all got to get through this and stay sane and sometimes being idle and doing nothing might be just what you need to do. I’ll be honest doing nothing too much might not be good for anyone, but once in awhile especially right now, it’s emotionally exhausting living through a time of uncertainty and worry. So if you need to rest, do.
I’ve some days chastised myself for not being motivated or achieving much, when a wise lady turned to me and said, “isn’t surviving a global pandemic achievement enough?” She’s got a point. Living through this and coming out the other end is achievement enough for us all. More than ever right now our physical and mental health needs to be at the heart of what we do. This weekend in particular for me has been a bit more of a struggle and I’ve been very emotionally up and down like a yo-yo flitting between full of life and energy to dance round the living room to cheesy music, to being quiet, subdued and not wanting to drag my sorry arse off the sofa. Both of which are absolutely fine and necessary right now.
A couple of good friends have reinforced this to me and reminded me not to take on anything too big in life right now. It’s a long road we’re on and we’ve to enjoy what we can. So as I’ve stated for months now in this blog, I can’t control what’s happening so I’ve to just accept it and go with the flow. I’m not very good at that but I’ve to try.
So the last few days I’ve also tried to focus on doing a bit of what I fancy instead of trying to plan how I’m going spend each day and hour. Toddler P needs to routine of meals and sleep times but what else do we need? Just to be together doing a bit of what we fancy to feed our souls. A bit of just doing what will make us happy or content at that moment in time, that keeps us safe and feeling ok. I’ll even use the word happy loosely right now, it might be just what makes us feel calm and relatively stable.
This afternoon I took to the kitchen, I’ve been doing it a lot lately. Cooking and baking is my happy place and for a very very long time now I’ve said how I need to do more of it. I find it therapeutic and relaxing, especially whilst in lockdown with lots of time to fill (however it’s ok not to fill all of the time with stuff to do if you don’t want to). I stuck some cheesy dancey retro playlists on the radio and sang and danced as I chopped, peeled and simmered at the stove. Suddenly my spirits lifted and I don’t know whether it was the music, the food or all of the above but for a moment I felt better and at peace.
I think the thing is, I’ve a list as long as my arm of things I could do, that I need to do but when the world feels so topsy turvy, it’s not always that easy to feel the urge to crack on and do them. Having a deadline makes things easier, I like to work to a deadline, but we don’t know what deadline we’re working to, good old Covid-19 isn’t giving us much of a clue yet as to how long before we’ll start to overcome its claws. I also don’t have a secret hotline to the cabinet office for a clue as to how long before life can pick up some pace again. So rather than soaring through my lockdown to do list, I’m plodding through it more at Eeyore’s pace than Tigger’s, but actually that’s ok if that’s what’s getting through this in a healthy way. And when I feel the need to I can pick up the pace.
So rather than saying I’m going with the flow, I’m saying I’ll feed my soul. Cooking today was more about making me happy and food for the soul than food for my belly (although the taste buds were happily satisfied). My new motto is to feed my soul, what activity, action, Zumba workout, crafty activity or pyjama day binge watching box set is going to feed my soul at that moment in time is what I’ll do.
However, I may ease up on the marmite flavour crisps and digestive biscuits…they’re feeding my soul and my waistline!