Week 13 Lockdown
19 June 2020 (by Chris Taylor (C Taylor))
To Our Wonderful Community
I hope you are all staying well – after 13 weeks Jan and I are starting to feel different emotionally from the first weeks of the pandemic spreading across the country. It seems like eons ago that our lives were ‘normal’, however I am sensing change in Brighton as more people venture out and as society begins to widen again.
I feel sure that we are learning a lot about ourselves in this period of confinement, and one aspect that may have taken us by surprise is how deeply we miss the routine, everyday elements of life before coronavirus, the aspects of “normal” living that we will have usually taken for granted.
We are, above all, creatures of habit and this brutal interruption to our routine may have made us disproportionately miss the more mundane aspects of daily life. I also know, for many, we may be missing a sense of purpose, of going somewhere and of achieving something. We also may be feeling inadequate in our own abilities.
Are you starting to feel like your life consists of going through the motions? Are you finding yourself wondering where the excitement has gone? Does sadness, hope and despair come in waves? If so, you aren’t alone. Many of us feel like we’re trudging through monotony with no end in sight.
Dolly Parton, amongst others, has been credited with the quote ‘We cannot direct the winds but we can adjust our sails.’
Adjusting our sails might mean that we have to make life choices that put some things on hold for a while or take us down a slightly different path than we had imagined for ourselves.
A strong wind comes, or changes direction, and our best response is to tinker with the sails to avoid sinking our boat. When things happen that are challenges in life, we can take steps and “adjust our sails” to modify the circumstances on our own behalf or better cope with them. COVID 19 has been more like a hurricane in our lives, and our sails now feel tattered and torn. Yet somehow, we are still here, demonstrating our resilience.
We’ve experienced many different emotions in our household. At times we have done nothing and let the emotions control us – giving us a sinking feeling. On other occasions we have made small steps to adjust our mood, manage differently and engage in small positive changes. There have been times when we haven't wanted to pay attention to our basic emotional health. At times, it has been harder to keep a regular sleep pattern and do exercise. There have been other times when our diet has been less healthy, routines and the structure of the day have also slipped. However mundane it feels, these basic needs cannot be underestimated, and we have had to adjust the sails to try and maintain balance and get back on track.
If, like me, you may be beginning to get hungrier to know what September looks like.; wondering whether it will be schools similar to pre-COVID or ‘blended learning’ (part school/part home learning). You may be looking for more certainty; you may need to make plans. My hope is that as we keep moving forward, the PM will give us some direction of travel to help us adjust our sails.
Some sails were adjusted this week and it has been an absolute joy to welcome more children back to school. The buzz of children permeating through the building has brought the school back to life. It has been equally delightful to see children’s families and school colleagues; it has given us all a boost of energy we much needed! I know the children have had a positive experience this week and I genuinely wish we could be offering them more time with us. Next week we will be welcoming different Year 1 children as well as introducing some reception children back and I very much look forward to seeing their smiling, happy faces.
Please remember how far you have come and how amazing you have been holding it all together whilst navigating this COVID hurricane.
Have a restful weekend, keep adjusting your sails and give yourselves the credit you deserve.