An honest diary entry, written during the coronavirus outbreak, without political opinion or conspiracy theories. I want to record my feelings and share a few positive news stories.
For the record
I had plans to write about gin this week, but it felt wrong to ignore the biggest crisis we’ve faced in our lifetime. Everyone’s writing about Coronavirus. I’m not special or unique. I don’t have a new perspective on the crisis. I’m not going to share any conspiracy theories or unverified news. I won’t be sharing my opinions about the government’s actions. I just want to record what is going on, so that in the months and years to come, we can look back on what we all went through, how we survived it and congratulate ourselves for how resilient we all were.
I feel far from resilient now.
Apart from the concerns I have about our health, business is slow and my self-employed status means I have no guaranteed income. But we are luckier than many. My husband has a well-paid job which, for now at least, is paying our bills. He is anxious about how long that will continue.
I have been through all the emotions over the last few days. At the weekend my only concerns were that I wouldn’t be able to go to a party and that people would mistake my cold for the dreaded virus. We laughed about it together as we drank wine well into the morning.
In just a few days the situation has escalated exponentially and the mood across the country has shifted. My anxiety has expanded. Today it feels suffocating.
The current situation
The infection has spread, and people’s ability to socialize and go about their everyday lives have been curtailed. In the UK we have been advised to keep at least two metres apart from everyone, to work from home, and only go out to exercise or shop for essentials.
Schools will close after tomorrow. For now, my kids are still at school, although many parents have already decided to keep their children at home. I wish mine were here with me. I just want to hold them close and protect them from all this madness.
My 11-year-old is so confused. Last night he asked if he would be taken away in the middle of the night like they took away Jews during the Holocaust. Because he’s learning about WWII at school, and we’re Jewish.
I don’t know when I’ll see my parents again. Mum told me how much she missed us all on the phone this morning. They were meant to be having a lovely holiday in the Cotswolds this week. Now they’re isolated at home.
It feels like we’re unwitting actors in a horror movie, without a script or any knowledge of the ending.
Having spent several days glued to rolling news and regularly checking social media, I now need to focus on good news. Because every cloud has a silver lining, here are some positive things to come out of this most terrible time.
- People are pulling together and helping each other, apart from the hoarders, for whom I have no time or respect. I received this through the post today:
- People are being kind, smiling, holding doors open and giving way for each other in traffic.
- We are connecting in more innovative ways. Our extended family has joined an app called House Party to video chat together.
- My lovely Pilates teacher has taken her classes online so we can all stay healthy.
- For the foreseeable future, our family will be having three meals together every day.
- I made cookies.
- I have connected with friends across continents who I haven’t spoken to for months.
- We have lots of gin.
- Spring is coming.
Good news from across the world
- There have been no domestic cases of Covid-19 in China today, for the first time since the outbreak began.
- In Norway, Prime Minister Erna Solberg held a press conference, especially for children. For half an hour, she and her team answered questions submitted by kids across the country. She told them it was normal to be scared but that everything would be okay.
- UK supermarkets have responded to shortages and self-distancing for older people, by opening their shops for the first hour of trading exclusively to the over 70s.
- Due to the lack of travel, pollution is down across the world. The smog has lifted over major cities in China where people have posted photos of blue skies.
- Pret a Manger is offering all NHS staff free hot drinks, and half-price food.
- Chelsea Football Club has made the Millennium Hotel, which it owns, available to NHS hospital staff free of charge.
How are you coping? I’m here if you want to share, you don’t have to comment publicly, you can send me an email. I’m on firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have any good news stories though, please share them in the comments. We could all do with as much positivity as possible.
Sending you love. This too will pass.
Much love, Vx