Julia age 51

What I found hardest about it all was that it crystallised my view of the world, seeing how easily controlled we are and how I don’t have faith or trust in the system. Scientists and doctors were being silenced and information out there being censored. People who questioned it, or wondered about what was going on were called crazy conspiracy theorists. It has felt that we have been told what to say, think and hear.   I kept hearing the word ‘sheeple’, it’s been used about people unquestionably following the mainstream narrative but also about those being more discerning and questioning the situation, it’s been like a generic insult to everyone. Feeling insecure in the world, living in a system that I don’t trust, has been the hardest thing for me, I was always aware I didn’t trust it, but suddenly it really mattered.

The 1st lockdown did feel something like a utopia though, it was so quiet and there was a sense of peace and people questioning what’s normal. It was lovely to see families out in the park, actually having the time to spend together. The shackles had gone and people were just getting on with living their lives. I know it wasn’t like that for everyone, it was very hard on some people. It was really nice getting to know my 15 year old daughter more, it limited her life experience but I think she quite liked not going to school and doing work online in her PJ’s! It was lovely to see how kind, thoughtful and helpful people were, you can almost forget how lovely people are when you watch the news. Someone put a note through our doors asking if anyone needed any help with anything, I didn’t but someone elderly or not able to get out would really value that, I messaged him to say how much I appreciated the sentiment.

I found myself going more inward the longer the restrictions went on but I got into a groove, feeling comfortable with what I could do. As the restrictions lift I’m taking my time to get back out there I’m not in a hurry to rush back out to the pub or anything, I’m taking it steady. I went to a performance and ritual workshop recently, it helped with the idea of connecting again and being able to meet and talk to new people. I’ve also been going to a local church, it’s a really beautiful building, I’ve been attending a reflective service there (when they have been allowed to open,) it’s such a lovely space to be in.  

Something that has helped me has been being able to speak with other people that have similar views to me about what’s been happening.  Working has got me through, I gave online support to people struggling with their mental health, it gave me the sense I was helping people. Walking has really helped too, I have 3 local parks nearby, so I have felt I had space to get out in, it’s been lovely to hear the musicians playing in the park.

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