How I'm Coping In Lockdown

Sunday, 24 May 2020


I remember the days leading up to lockdown, muttering to my colleagues over our 11am cup of tea and biscuits. Muttering over the anxiety that came with still trying to work when everything felt so uncertain, and how we would find it difficult to cope if we had to stay totally at home for any prolonged period of time. My heart was going out to those who had to self-isolate, because I just couldn't see myself doing well with it.

And then, I sat in front of the TV whilst Boris told us all we were to Stay At Home. It wasn't totally unexpected, but I still felt as if there had been a lot of speculation and little actual warning, and our day-to-day lives as we knew them were turned upside down.

After an incredibly anxious morning, I was put onto the furlough scheme, and the next goodness-knows-how-long stretched out in front of me. A vast expanse of time with no clear end date.

When you put someone in that situation who, on one hand, is a workaholic, checks her work emails constantly and lives at 100mph and in the same breath has crippling anxiety when it comes to the unknown and not having control of a situation, you'd assume it'd be a disaster.

After laying on my bed, staring at the ceiling and fretting for an hour, texting my mum in a panic and speculating with the rest of the group chat, I tried to gain a bit of perspective.

Before lockdown, I was having panic attacks every morning about going into work and dealing with the general public. I was obsessively wiping down my desk, washing my hands and picking things up with tissues. I was now to stay at home, safe. Not everyone else had that privilege. I could now try to make this experience as positive as possible, despite all of the awful things that were going on.

I sat down, and as I often do when I'm trying to calm my anxious mind and take control of a situation, I wrote lists. Lists of everything that I could fill my time with over the coming weeks. Walks. Online exercise classes. Declutter. Write. Read. Practice make-up. And everything else in between. I instantly felt calmer. I can get through this.

And got through it I have, so far. Some days have been better than others. Some days I've woken up with a sunny outlook, bouncing out of bed knowing I can spend the whole day working on my blog, the kind of time I've been longing for for months (under better circumstances!) Other days I've felt nothing short of naff, exhausted and wanting to spend the day under my duvet eating Doritos.

One of the biggest things I've learned has been that in such a turbulent situation, you have to let yourself feel how you feel, whilst keeping perspective. Even though I'm very privileged to be able to stay at home, myself and my family are all healthy and my furlough pay is still enough to pay my bills, it's okay to admit that the situation is still pretty shit. I've been worried for my job security, for my loved ones. So, when I feel the need to spend the day in my pyjamas, eating my feelings and watching Ferris Bueller's Day Off for the millionth time, that's exactly what I've been doing.

I'm missing a lot of things about 'normal' life. Seemingly odd things. Like reading a book in a coffee shop, or having my mum text me to see if I'm home for a cuppa, as she almost always does on a Sunday afternoon. I miss walking around central London, listening to the sounds of the city and being surrounded by people. I miss saying 'screw it, I can't be bothered to cook, pub for tea?'

I miss seeing my friend's little ones grin at me when I walk through the front door, the eldest dragging me off to play princesses or handing me an imaginary cup of tea. I miss squeezing my uni friends after not seeing them for a few months and laughing over cocktails.

I'm trying to find comfort in the little things. Little things like how I feel so much lighter after a FaceTime chat with my friends. But also knowing that it's okay to leave my phone in another room for a while if needed.

Little things like getting totally lost in a book and coming round to reality hours later.

Not having a garden or any form of outside space in lockdown has been one of the things I've found the most tough, but instead I've been finding little sun-spots around the house where I can lie on the floor and feel the sun on my face. Yep, like a cat.

I've been relishing having the time to work on my content. Making to-do lists knowing that I can sack it off halfway through the day if I fancy it in favour of watching Disney in my duvet with a share-bag of chocolate buttons to myself. The rest can wait until tomorrow.

Nine weeks in (I think?) and I'm now facing the possibility that I'm going to be back at work in the next week or so. And that comes with its own anxieties and worries, but perhaps that's a conversation for another day.

But for the most part, my worries about coping with staying at home and not being able to live my life as usual weren't necessary. I guess it just goes to show the resilience of people and how quickly we can adapt to a new normal.

Whether we're in lockdown for another week, three weeks or nine weeks, we'll be okay. On the not-so-positive days, I'll just keep in mind how good it's going to be when I can squeeze my little sister again knowing that it's safe to do so. How much I'm going to savour my first pub tea, or taking an extra second or two to breathe in the sea air on my first post-lockdown trip to the coast.

However you're coping with lockdown, whether you find each day a battle or are adapting, I'm proud of you. Whatever your coping mechanisms, keep going with them. We've all just got to do what we have to in order to get through.

Love,
Sian xo




4 comments

  1. Thank you so much for sharing such an honest and open outlook on how you are feeling my darling, that is so brave of you to do. I can totally relate to so much of how you are feeling so please know that you're not alone and that I'm always here whenever you need me. Fingers crossed that we are all gonna be "back to normal" soon and this crappy government can sort something out for us all without the media scaring us. I'm sending you so much love. Stay strong, stay home, stay safe. ♡

    With love, Alisha Valerie x | www.alishavalerie.com

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  2. Lockdown has literally been the hardest thing in the world. I've written a blog post on it too going live next week and honestly I am looking forward to things going back to normal.

    Love, Amie ❤️

    The Curvaceous Vegan

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  3. I struggled a lot when lockdown started but have been working from home so have had some sort of structure 5 days a week xx

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  4. Hey friend, it is very well written article, thank you for the valuable and useful information you provide in this post. Keep up the good work! FYI, please check these depression, stress and anxiety related articles:


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