The day Aotearoa stood still – 26th March 2020
Lockdown day 1 is here. This is how I started this blog, and, on the 26th March, I wrote that one sentence and I closed my laptop. For five weeks this word document sat unopened on my desktop, why? Because I had no words, I dint know what to think and I certainly had no energy to write.
I thought I would come up with a blog post that would inspire, help, and soothe the worried souls but the truth is that I have nothing, sorry I rephrase, I had nothing.
Shopping centres, parks, and restaurants shut their doors. Entire workforces sent home to work if they can, others told to sit tight. The burden of financial pressure mounting, redundancy, job loss, and the vulnerable falling sick. Children are homeschooled, the stock market plummets, and our borders closed. Flights are now grounded, and you only leave the house if you are an essential worker. The sound of someone coughing in the supermarket had others whispering. There were no smiling faces and if they were, we couldn’t see them behind the masks and the gloves. We downloaded house party, the whole world did, and we spent time facetiming our loved ones across the pond. Our conversations short, sweet, or long and full of hope. We got creative, we baked, we ran out of yeast on the South Island. Our passion projects came to play, and we focused on our fitness, but other days were spent under blankets with hot water bottles and headaches. Some days we made it through with a smile, some days didn’t even get dressed. We start and end emails with I hope you’re well and the word bubble and stay home frequent our sentences. The world, our world, Aotearoa stood still for five whole weeks.
Today, the 4th May 2020 we watched as Dr. Ashley Bloomfield came on stage to deliver his daily 1 pm update. Kia Ora koutou katoa, he starts with every time. Today, New Zealand we have no new cases of Covid-19 to report, we have no probable cases, no new deaths, and no one in ICU. It was at that moment I burst into tears. The light at the end of the tunnel just flashed and I could picture an end to this, I felt like the world had been lifted off my shoulders for a short second.
Anxiety is a beast and it’s been thriving it’s butt off in this type of environment. The last week no exception, it came with a whirlwind of emotions. I had the next year of our life planned. Travel, wedding, house buying, Europe, international and national jobs, wedding part two and so much more but all of this doesn’t matter when the world is falling apart around you. People are sick, that’s what matters. Your health, your family, and friend’s health and their safety become the priority. I stopped thinking about work and where my next invoice would come from.
It’s a highly stressful time for all, where we all silently sit and search for answers. Little did we know, that during the months that have been and the months that follow the entire world would find itself singularly focused on that very search. It is so important to remember that us humans, that’s you and your loved ones are resilient things. If anything, this will make us stronger. Hidden in the depths of all the pandemic madness is a silver lining, our light at the end of the tunnel. Now more than ever the world is united, we are literally in this together. I don’t agree that we are in the same boat, but we are most certainly paddling in the same storm. The entire world is working as one to help each other and to be blunt come out of this shit show soon.
Today marks a new normal. A new normal with media praising our efforts, lighter news stories, and the beauty of a new world unfolding in our current surroundings. From one world citizen to another I beg you to take a deep breath and think deeply about what you want to put back into your life. This is your chance; this is our chance to define a new version of normal. We are now able to rewrite our future, the future we want. Find what works for you and others around you, take parts of your lockdown life, and integrate them into your new freedom. Work, live, and love slower, be compassionate, be kind to yourself, to others and the world.
Take a moment to regain your power and banish your anxious mind. You are not alone, we are one, we are resilient, we are kind and we are fearless.
Be patient, take your time. The world will be ready and waiting to hear from you.