“She stood in the storm and when the wind did not blow her way, she adjusted her sails” ~Elizabeth Edwards~
Having spoken about this briefly on my Instagram recently and received such wonderful feedback from you all, I felt compelled to blog.
I don’t know about you, but lockdown has felt like a complete whirlwind to me. One minute I was in the salon chatting away with clients, creating beautiful nails, and feeling like the COVID-19 pandemic which was unfolding in front of our eyes was merely a dream, and the next thing I know the salon had to close, gyms were shut, and toilet roll was suddenly the most sought after product! Crazy, right?
Can you believe it, it was suddenly illegal for me to work! Everything was taken out of my hands – I felt helpless. ‘How will I survive’? was one of the many thoughts racing through my mind. I didn’t know how I would possibly earn my money and pay my bills. Being the sociable person I am, yet living alone, how would I cope without seeing my friends, family, and clients? Never had I felt this powerless, not even after my brain surgery. The truth is, none of us have ever lived through a pandemic such as this and we probably won’t live through another. It’s unpredictable and uncontrollable.
All of a sudden, in the space of a few hours my life suddenly felt extremely daunting. I realise that we probably all felt a bit of this, and all I can say is, it’s completely normal.
So how did I cope? Well, I did as I always do. I took deep breaths, I meditated, and I practiced my yoga. As the quote above says, I readjusted my sails in order to sail the new, choppy waters in front of me, and I trusted that everything would be okay. As soon as I did this, everything became less daunting and it all came together. All of a sudden I was filming yoga videos for Headway, teaching zoom classes to Cavernoma Society members, and setting up my own zoom yoga classes. I started practising yoga by myself for 2-3 hours a day, and I came to the realisation that the solitary life isn’t all that bad. When we embrace something instead of trying to fight it, it suddenly feels more manageable; we take back some of our control. I found new things to fill my time such as online classes, including Mantra chanting with Antarma and Indee yoga. They were a lifesaver to keep me going and keep me company while I was at home alone.
However, 14 weeks down the line and things are changing again. Slowly everything is opening back up and I have been left with choices and dilemmas. I live alone so I am allowed to choose a social bubble and start spending time with people again. But who do I choose? Family? Friends? People close who I can visit often? People far away because I miss them? Choices, choices. I am excited and extremely grateful to be in this position; all of a sudden everyone wants to see me. However, it’s also overwhelming. After spending three months completely alone with nothing but Zoom quizzes for company, seeing people again just feels alien.
I feel like the excitement is taking over. The shops are busier and the invites to garden parties, BBQ’s, and for socially distanced walks are coming in thick and fast thanks to the beautiful weather we’ve been blessed with. My mind is whirling and I am saying yes to everything as it feels like I have to make the most of this opportunity. However, I am exhausted and I have to remind myself to do this slowly. There is plenty of time to see everyone.
This is why, I have made the conscious decision to have one day a week to myself. To practice my yoga, breath, read, listen to music and meditate. I will book it out in my diary and nothing else will take precedent. Going through brain surgery and recovering from several strokes has taught me that doing nothing is actually doing something. We all need that gentle reminder to take time out for ourselves. It’s incredibly important to our mental and physical health and wellbeing.
Take time for yourself and your own well being, because if you don’t look after yourself, no one else will. Our health is our wealth.
If like me you are finding the easing of lockdown restrictions a bit overwhelming, just remember to take some time for yourself. Schedule it if you need to and count your breath, fit in a yoga class or meditation session. As life starts to pick up do not forget to take a few moments of calm. We will never get this time back again, so make the most of it.
How are you feeling about the easing of lockdown restrictions? Are you pleased that life’s returning to normal or have you become accustomed to this ‘new normal’? What have you learned about yourself during lockdown? Share your thoughts and experiences with me in the comments section below. Let’s make a mindful effort to take some positive changes from this.