The Lockdown Diaries Volume 1
The Lockdown Diaries: Volume 1
So begins this new reality. We are in day one of official State of Emergency Lockdown.
The sun is shining, and still has a little of Summers warmth left in it despite the autumn leaves falling from the trees, the sky is blue. It is, by all accounts, a beautiful day and yet I cannot shake this kind of surreal, displaced feeling, as if the world has tilted off its axis somehow, and everything is out of kilter. I feel a little more at peace than yesterday though, because this Lockdown to me feels like safety, and it feels like a tangible thing we can all do to slow this evil thing down so we have a hope of winning what suddenly feels like a war. I hope that there is no reason for us to leave the farm any time soon. I just want to wrap my little family up in this bubble and keep them safe.
I did our last Countdown grocery shop , just before the alert level 3 (soon to be full lockdown 4) was announced. The supermarket shelves were patchy and empty in places, but the mood was eerily calm inside, the way the atmosphere feels still but charged before a thunderstorm. Despite the sombre quietness, and the careful distance between shoppers, people smile at each other more, the uncertainty somehow making everyone feel somehow more connected. Such is the silver lining in the stormy clouds of disasters. A woman lamented to me across the distance of the chiller that she didn’t know what she needed, that she couldn’t think, that she wanted to go home and cry. My heart aches. I cannot hug this stranger, I cannot place my hand on her arm even for reassurance, any other time I would. Now I throw words out as a balm. It will be ok, we will be ok. I know it’s true, we are a resilient bunch, but it feels empty and inadequate to say it. How much humans need touch as comfort, sometimes words just aren’t enough.
This morning I go for my walk on the farm instead of my favourite quiet road, since driving even the short distance there is not an option. I feel blessed that I have this space where I know there will be no one, where I can roam without worry. I come home, we video call my Mother who is living alone, thankful for the technology and wondering what it must have been like in the wars and flu epidemics of the past when isolation would have truly been isolation. We are fortunate in so many ways.
Much needed rain is forecast for tomorrow, so we seize the sunny opportunity for a picnic by the nearby now-dry creek, in a cluster of trees the children have named Willow Woods. It is one of their favourite haunts. The picnic attendants consist of my husband and I, my eleven year old daughter, my nine year old son, the much loved elderly rescue dog of dubious lineage , the ten week old Doberman puppy, and finally, cat number two, who somehow followed us, curious and aloof. It is so idyllic, so perfect sitting in the long grass on the hillside, watching the children play that it is hard to believe the world is quiet chaos.
I want so badly to protect them from all of it.