10 things I’ve learnt during lockdown.

I’m really looking forward to lockdown ending.. I think we all are. We want to be reconnected to our families and our friends. We want to do the simple things like nip to the shops or mooch around Ikea. At least I do! As our restrictions are becoming more relaxed and we are now able to sense normality approaching, I’m not gonna lie I’m anxious about the whole thing. Have I actually quite enjoyed this bubble? I’ve absolutely enjoyed having my husband around more, spending everyday with Adeline and I’ve loved enjoying the little things more. Things that we take for granted like the outdoors. I’ve always been an outdoorsy person but there’s something about knowing it’s the only one thing you’re able to do and take pleasure from in your day and making more effort when you’re out, exploring new places and collecting flowers, sticks, pine cones, moss, etc. you name it and bringing them home to create crafts with. Would I have done that before?

I spoke to my Mum & Thom yesterday and asked them what positives they have taken from Lockdown & what they will miss and I would like you to ask yourself the same question because it’s surprising what you may find yourself saying.

I’ve realised that I spent far too much time cramming in so many activities and plans through the week & weekends and rushing around from here to there constantly. This is probably the most I’ve ever just taken time out and let each day lead me instead of the other way round.

I’ve also learnt who I need around me and who I don’t. Like who and what really matters. I feel closer to Adeline & my husband and I’m actually grateful for this opportunity to watch my 2 year old grow. Every day learning new words, trying new things and having the confidence to do it. Don’t get me wrong I think those first few weeks were bloody hard and I would of done anything to get lockdown done but because we are now able to see a family member and enjoy a walk outdoors with them, I feel content. I feel safe and comfortable and I’m scared that once our country returns to some sort of normality everything is going to go to shit. I hope everyone has learnt something through this experience & I hope people will be less selfish and more neighbourly, looking out for each other and their community. Knowing that we have all experienced something unique together (yet very apart!).

So here are my 10 things that I’ve learnt through lockdown. I thought this would be a fun idea to do and something I will always look back on and also remind myself of the good, bad & the challenging yet thought provoking experience.

10 things I’ve learnt through lockdown

1. The days are long

Before lockdown my days were always chopped up into different plans and people I’m seeing, places I’m going. When none of that is available and everywhere is closed, all of a sudden the days are SO long. I wake up every morning worrying about entertaining Adeline for an entire day, without losing my mind. It’s so difficult! Adeline is like a mini-whirlwind at the moment – activities last 5 minutes before she is onto the next, toys scattered across the floor, mess, chaos all around. I feel like I just chase my tail all day, tidying up constantly. Angry at my husband working from home upstairs (bless him). But seriously the stress of wondering if I’m being ‘fun enough’ or ‘educational enough’ are hard to push away. Or by week 5 when I found myself turning the tv on constantly and letting Adeline watch peppa pig for probably way too long, feeling so guilty that I then insisted on a tv ban which then left me even more exhausted! By the evening time when I finally got a moment to myself, I was exhausted, so I would head to bed, ready for the next day of carnage. It was like Groundhog Day. Seriously. That’s when the outdoors became so important and where we all truly felt truly happy and free.

2. Nature is nurturing

Our daily walks are the most important time of the day. If I ever found myself feeling stressed, upset or frustrated the outdoors would see me right. It also had the same effect on Adeline. Sometimes on the harder days she would literally be a different person once we were outside. Because we couldn’t travel anywhere by car we found ourself loving our local even more. We live in such a pretty village with so many amazing walks on our doorstep, some that we had never even explored before, but because we had the time to do it we found ourselves finding new places. We would always make the most out of our daily walks and try and make them exciting for Adeline seen as I felt like she was missing out on her usual park, softplay etc. We found ourselves being expert squirrel ‘hunters’ (warning no squirrels were actually harmed!), stick collectors (later made into stick families) & mastering the skills of hiding behind trees. All the simple, free things in life!

3. Love our local

While big supermarkets struggle to cope with demand, many local shops have stayed well-stocked around us and have been going above and beyond to adapt to help their communities. I hope that more people make more effort in the future to support our local producers, shops and businesses. Perhaps we will even take the time while we have it to grow our own fruit and vegetables! Shout out of Croissant D’Ore and Brown Greens in Rawdon for bringing normality to our life with your takeout services, fresh coffee and smiles.

4. Online shopping is my saviour

I don’t need to go into much detail here but amazon prime you’re my hero.

5. Children are adaptable

I was so worried about lockdown and how Adeline would deal with having a lot of the things we do taken away from her. Like the parks- god save the swings! And soft play. But honestly I don’t think she even cared. All she wants to do is spend time with mummy & daddy. She’s amazed me throughout this whole pandemic and I couldn’t be prouder of her. Let’s hope she manages to adapt back into life because at the minute she won’t leave my side and is generally terrified of people.

6. Laugher is everything

I dunno about you but It’s been an emotional roller coaster for me. I’ve probably cried at least once a week. Probably from exhaustion and how much I miss my mum & dad. I’d be laughing once minute then crying the next. Thom would often say to me ‘you’re having a good day today’! That could change hourly. So what did we all do as a country to create laughter? We dressed up with nowhere to go, we hosted quiz nights, DJs from around the world performed live, vertical concerts you name it. Just the other night we had a 5 hour reunion with our friends who live in 5 different time zones! We played beer pong, flip cup and more all over zoom!

7. The simple things bring us the most joy

From cardboard boxes, painting rocks, googly eyes on sticks, hide & seek, running down hills, jumping on the bed, picnic, animals/ nature all simple and fun!

8. Good food & good coffee is everything!

When we aren’t looking after Adeline, the food shopping is filling up the rest of our time. Scouring the supermarkets, planning our meals, replicating take away, baking! I love food but during lock didn’t I LOVVVVVEEEE food! (Note requirement to balance with copious amounts of exercise in nature!)

9. Getting creative

From photography, pebble art to dancing like an idiot on Tik Tok I’m having fun with it all!! Photography has always been something I’ve loved for fun and something I can lose myself in for hours. My family & my surroundings are my inspiration and I’ve loved playing with the camera & editing. I’ve also started taking photos of myself more because why not! Everyone loves a selfie.

10. I’m so lucky

Throughout lockdown I’ve often thought how lucky I am. A roof over my head, a supportive family, incredible husband, healthy happy daughter, food on the table. I think it’s helped me get through the whole process because when I happen to have a bad day, i would think of all of the people putting themselves at risk – the nhs, key workers etc etc. And I’m just being told to stay at home! Pretty easy job but at the same time so painful. People compare the virus to war time, but i think that’s a bit extreme considering our contribution to this ‘war’ is to #stayathome and #besafe (whilst also staying alert).

I hope you now spend some time having a think yourself or talking to whoever is sat next to you. Make your own list! You don’t need to blog about it.

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