This shifting of balance, and feelings is an almost minute by minute experience at the moment. I find my self laughing heartily as my partner does silly dances , or does impersonations of familiar characters. I know he is trying to keep my spirits up. And it works. Yet, the next minute, I have my fingers in my ears like a child singing ‘lalalala’ when they don’t want to hear something, or switching off the news when it becomes overwhelm.
This reminded me of something,this high alert, it reminds me of stressful times, fear, and it reminds me of loss, of grief.
And it is all of those things. All of them.
The anticipation of the unknown, and the loss of all that is and was familiar around me if very like a death. Not of a person. But of my identity.
There are 5 stages to grief.
Denial ….Rolls eyes, considers conspiracy theories, laughs at the messenger
Anger…….People are so annoying, why are they so selfish, who needs that many bog rolls?
Depression….Crying over the small stuff, focusing on the loss of work, income, socialising.
Bargaining….Once this is over, I’ll be a better person. When we get through this, I’m going to appreciate my parents/children/work more .
Acceptance….Ok , I understand this is only going to be for a short time, and I will make the most of the situation, day by day
Yet like grief, we bounce between these emotions , and in no particular order, on a minute by minute basis,
I understand a lot, about control. I placed myself into an exile for many years, depriving myself of fun, food, and adventure, while I battled, and overcame a 13 year eating disorder. I look back at that time , with distance now, but with an appreciation of how strong I was , to come through it, but also with a bit of sadness, that I wasted so many years. But I can not and would not change that path, because it led me to here, and who I am now.
I guess, like most of us, we like, and need to be ‘in control’ or our lives. But are we really?
We can plan our day, and make the best use of our time and travel and dance, and make love and …..
But the only true moment we have in our hands, is this present second. The past is gone and the future is yet unseen . Not one of us can say with any 100pc certainty, what tomorrow , let alone 3 months, from now will bring and that is a beautiful thing.
I don’t mean that in a ‘oh but we could get run over by a bus ‘kind of way. Simply , that we only can guarantee the next breath, and then the next one.
We have no power or control over what our next door neighbour is doing, and whether, or if, they are stockpiling or using their daily exercise to run to the off licence to stock up on boozies. We cant do a thing about it, we can only focus on ourselves and how we respond. Using up our vital energy to worry about that, is going to create more stress and unbalance in our calm.
I’ve asked friends to not send me Coronavirus linked private messages, trying to scrape back some power for my self. But it would be much simpler for me , to just not open the messages. I have got cross with Sean for sharing his facts and figures with me, it would be simpler to say ‘ I’m busy at the moment, tell me later’ , then return to watching my reruns of Baking with Samantha .
Turn off the Tv. While it is useful to keep up to date with current affairs , to constantly have that negative buzz on in the back round, is demoralising , and panic inducing. The same with social and mainstream media. Yes, the parks have closed, but does it HELP my day to read 503 angry comments from people who are stressed and wound up?
Get out into the fresh air. Put on your favourite music and power walk until the sky turns black.
Read your books , until your bums becomes numb ,and your eyes begin to cross.
Kick a football with the kids until you never ever want to explain the rules again!
Like all grief, this will pass with time. It will be different for every single one of us. We will stay in the different stages for different lengths of time. We may think we have reached acceptance, and then are right back into anger a brief moment later.
We must accept power in our powerlessness, because this is something we are all going to go through. And we need to go through it to reach the finish line.
We will be fine
We will get through this
We will learn from this
We will be at peace