The Lockdown Diaries | Week 1 vs Week 12
This week marks our 12th week of self-isolation. Twelve. Weeks.
Twelve weeks was, of course, the period of time Terry – and others like him – were originally told they’d have to shield for, and, I don’t know, I think I just kind of assumed that would be IT, really? That we’d do our 12 weeks, then we’d be “released” and everything would just go back to normal?
All of which now seems laughably naive, especially given that, just yesterday, the Scottish Government announced that shielders should expect to have to continue until the end of July (Albeit with some small changes to the recommendations: from next week, for instance, Terry will officially be “allowed” to go outside once a day. Yay.), at which point we’ll have locked down for five whole months. Which… yes. I’m SO glad I didn’t know at the start of this that we’d be losing FIVE ENTIRE MONTHS of our lives this year, because I honestly don’t think I’d have coped.
But here we are: three months down, at least two more to go, and, although the lockdown feels pretty much endless at this point, there’s no denying that week 12 is very different from week 1, so I figured now was as a good a time as any to take a look back at how the beginning of the lockdown compares to what should have been the end of it. So, here we go…
Health & fitness
Week 1: I started lockdown the lightest I’ve been in YEARS, having lost over five pounds the week before, thanks to a combination of stomach-churning levels of anxiety, plus a throat infection which left me unable to eat, or even drink much, for a few days. I wasn’t fit, obviously, but I’d been wanting to lose those 5+ pounds since before Max was born, so, I mean, I wasn’t exactly crying over it, either.
Week 12: Yeah, totally gained all of those pounds back – plus a couple more for luck – thanks to a combination of eating crap, and never exercising. I’d like to claim that this is totally not my fault, and that it’s just not possible to exercise without leaving the house, but we all know I could be doing Joe Wicks PE, or any number of home workouts or whatever, so, in reality, the only reason for this sorry state of affairs is that, a) I just can’t be bothered, and, b) I can’t stop eating, help me. (Also, c) I HATE workout videos. HATE them.)
My motivation for all things exercise (And all things “self-control” for that matter) is at an all time low right now, and, no amount of pep-talks seem to be helping, so I think it’s safe to say that I’m NOT going to be one of those people who use lockdown to finally get fit, or train for a marathon or whatever. With that said, now that we’ve started to venture out of the house again, I’ve come up with a cunning plan to combat this, which I’ll either tell you about next week, if I manage to stick to it, or conveniently forget to mention ever again if I don’t. The suspense!
Week 1: My style motto for the first few weeks of lockdown was basically, “If I can’t sleep in it, I don’t want to know about it.” Seriously, some days I changed out of one pair of PJs just to get into another pair. Well, there just didn’t seem to be much point in getting dressed when I wasn’t going to leave the house, and it definitely helped shave a bit of time off my nightime routine, so there was that, too.
Week 12: Fast-forward 12 weeks, and I’m pleased to report that I’m wearing “real” clothes again: in fact, thanks to the recent warm weather, I’ve even been able to break out some of the summer dresses I didn’t think I’d get to wear this year, so it’s been a pretty big change, really. I still have my sweatpant days, obviously, but they’re nicer sweatpants now. And I wear makeup with them and everything!
Week 1: I basically spent the first 14 days (Which, as you know, is reckoned to be the maximum incubation period for Covid-19) constantly monitoring myself and my family for any sign of the virus. I was checking my temperature (And Max’s) multiple times per day, washing my hands constantly, and almost passing out with fear any time one of us sneezed. I was a mess, seriously.
Week 12: One of the few benefits of lockdown is that, in addition to avoiding Covid-19, we’ve also avoided picking up any other bugs that might be doing the rounds (Which is a welcome relief from last winter, when we just rolled from one illness to the next…), so my health anxiety has been able to take itself down a couple of notches, thankfully. Unfortunately, though, I seem to have developed hay fever since Max was born (I’m assuming there’s no connection here, it’s just that I never really noticed it before that…), so the last few weeks haven’t been completely anxiety free, because every time I feel sniffly, I assume it’s Covid. (Yes, even though, “Feeling a bit sniffly,” isn’t actually a symptom…). Still, compared to the start of the year, they’ve been an absolute breeze, so I guess I have lockdown to thank for that.
Week 1: I was watching the government briefings every day, and, if I couldn’t watch them live, I’d spend the day constantly refreshing the news app on my phone, waiting for The Numbers, as I think of them, to be released, and also scouring news sites for anything connected to treatments, vaccines, etc.
Week 12: I do still watch the Scottish Government briefings if I happen to be eating lunch when they’re on, but I’ll also frequently get to the end of the day before realising I haven’t checked the news since morning, and have absolutely no idea what The Numbers are for that day. It’s not that I’ve forgotten that we’re in the middle of a pandemic, obviously, or that I no longer care about it, but I have to admit, it has become almost a kind of background noise these days, which can be overshadowed by other events – something I’d never have imagined happening back at the start.
This week, for instance, most of the talk in our house has centred around the Black Lives Matter movement: I realise I haven’t actually spoken about this here on the blog yet, but that’s definitely not because I haven’t been thinking about it – it’s purely that I haven’t had time to sit down and organise my thoughts into the kind of blog post that would do the subject justice, so I’ve been posting about it on Twitter and Instagram, instead. So I’ve spent a lot of time this week immersed in non-Covid-related news, and that just wouldn’t have happened 12 weeks ago, when the pandemic was pretty much the only thing I COULD think about. I’d hesitate to say that lockdown has started to feel “normal”, but it would probably be true to say that we’ve adjusted to it, to the point where it’s no longer the only thought in our minds any more.
I AM still having near-constant anxiety dreams about social distancing, though. I’m not sure that will EVER change…