Coronavirus Diary – Page 2 (One week into lock down)

We are a week into the lock down now in the UK. Obviously everyone reading this that lives in the UK will be well aware of that. Just thought I’d mention in for any international readers. One week ago today everything was advised to close. To start with a few businesses tried to keep on going, but by the beginning of this week they had closed. All non essential businesses had to close.

Over the week the rules about having a life have become very limited. It’s more a case of surviving rather than enjoying. The rules have been changing by the day, each day more strict than the last. Now we have been told that we can only go out once a day for exercise, either a run, walk or cycle. And we have to stick to social distancing, keeping two metres apart from anybody who doesn’t live with you. Key workers are allowed to work if they can’t work from home. People have actually been told not to go into work which is a very unusual thing to hear. Children are told not to go into school unless they really have to. Also a very strange thing to hear. Before it was all kind of divided, some people had to self isolate and some didn’t, depending in their health and work circumstances. Now we all do unless we have an essential job. In a way it feels better that way for me, less confusing. Plus somebody said to me, the sooner we all stay in and stick to the rules, the sooner it will all be over. If there are different rules for different people then people just push the boundaries and nobody really knows what they are doing. But obviously some things do need to keep going for us all to survive. But the less people out the better. I hadn’t really thought about it like that before. It does make sense. The sooner we all stick to it, the sooner we will all be free. It is a scary thought though. The only services still open are the ones that we need to keep us alive. Supermarkets, hospitals and GP surgeries. Without the internet, we would all be very lost and lonely right now.

TV has gone all weird this week. News presenters have a two metre measure between them, to prove that they are two metres apart. And everyone who is being interviewed or taking part in the show is over video link from their homes. It’s like watching strange home videos. Even the soaps have stopped production this week. Which means the episodes that they do have left to air will be more spread out. Which means that Star Wars is on tonight instead of Coronation Street. Normally I would not be impressed at all with this, but at least it will keep my boyfriend entertained for a few hours. To be fair though they have got over thirty years of soaps they could start showing instead. Or bring back some of the old ones like Brookside and Family Affairs. I would love to see Brookside back. New or repeats, either way I would love it! 😀

The first few days of this lock down were a real struggle for me. It felt suffocating and unbearable. The thought of self isolating filled me with fear and dread. Everybody was telling me that it was for good reasons, but I just couldn’t understand that. It all just felt so wrong and like it was more of a threat than a good thing. I was just as worried about staying in for months than I was about going out and potentially catching the virus. Everyone has reacted to this in their own way. But my need to escape was really extreme compared to a lot of people that I know.

Over the last few days I have been thinking a lot more rationally and remembered that when I was having my therapy last year, we covered me feeling trapped. This happened when i was in hospital, I was really confused, paranoid and having hallucinations. I thought everyone was just trying to confuse me and playing mind games with me, when they weren’t. I felt trapped in this strange world that only I understood, I was trapped in bed hooked up to loads of machines and I was trapped in hospital with people I felt I couldn’t trust. I know the truth now, it was all in my mind, but at the time it was a very scary place and I was desperate to escape. This has got me thinking, that maybe my reaction to the lock down has been exagorated because of that trauma.

To start with I was thinking that self isolating wouldn’t do my mental health any good in terms of anxiety and depression. What I didn’t realise is actually, it’s triggered a PTSD response. I have been feeling a lot better and more settled over the last few days, so I don’t think there is any need to worry in terms of my PTSD. It was just my initial response and I get it now. I get why I seemed to be on one page and the rest of the world was on another. It’s not just because I hate being told what to do, that is true, but it’s not that this time. It’s a response from the trauma I had eight years ago.

I really do worry for people who are mentally in a worse position than I am. It has also come to light on the news about how this could effect people who suffer domestic abuse. As the virus has become more widely spread in the UK I do understand the need for this lock down and I am sticking to it. But there are so many other dangers that this could be causing. I’m lucky, I have family and friends who I can talk to. I am mentally in the right place to look online for help and advice. Not everybody is so lucky. That really scares me in these circumstances.

xx ❤ xx

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