Lockdown, isolation, quarantine, call it what you want – it has had a profound impact on a lot of us. There have been ups and downs, highs and lows and we all have had our own experience of being confined to home life and not seeing much of anyone but those we share our house with. In a previous blog post I talked about the silver linings of being at home, working from home, being forced to slow down and stay in one space. I have found lots of positives and also discussed that some people (including myself) will find it difficult going back to normal life, whenever thay may be. Having time to think and being part of something so unique and partly absurd can make us reevaluate life, our jobs, our relationships, things and habits we hold dear. The environment has already shown signs of improvement and some people have said that life as we know it may never return again. My question in all this uncertainty is, whether things have changed for me, too. What have I learnt from this pandemic? Is there anything I want to change in my life? Are there things I have been unhappy with and being locked up has magnified the problem? Do I miss some things, events and people more than I expected? I am still waiting for some kind of epiphany, so I do not expect anything groundbreaking to change, but there are signs that life as I know it isn’t fulfilling me in the way I thought it did. I notice getting restless, and that may well be because I can’t go anywhere, but the restlessness can be applied to many parts of my life. Existential questions arise: What am I supposed to be doing with my life, is my job really what I am meant to be doing, who are my people and do I serve them well? Am I serving myself well? What does the universe want from me? You may wonder how one person can juggle so many questions at once around in her brain, and I can tell you, it is quite demanding. However, these questions bother me and no, I am not bordering on a midlife crisis (Christ, I am nowhere near midlife, and anyway, I am going to live forever!). What I am wondering is, am I alone in wanting to make fundamental changes to my life? Am I the only one that feels that this virus has shown me that I want something else from my life? I speak to some of my writer friends and pose them the same questions. I get mixed replies, but none of them seem to be surprised or put off by the way I am currently feeling. One of them is in a similar situation. “I really want to move. I want a place of my own, my own space”, she tells me, evoking my own memories of living with messy house mates when I first moved to England. “And I want a new job, a better job. It may sound strange, but I think I deserve better.” Of course my friend deserves better. I get that, too. I have spent a lot of my career selling myself short and not knowing my own value. I am still cross with myself and am keen to make changes in my professional life, too. Nevertheless, I am not in a position to make any rash decisions. I have two small children and am in the middle of completing a postgraduate degree. The sensible side of my persona is always holding me to account but the rebel inside me, the untamed, raw woman wants something else. So where do we go from there? What do we do with this newfound “wisdom”, intuition and urge to do something else?
I have also talked about change in one of my posts and how important it is to roll with it, embrace it and to make the best out of a new situation to avoid falling behind and keep up with personal growth and development. New opportunities only present themselves when you are not standing still, so I know that change is never a bad thing. I can’t tell you what my life will look like after lockdown. In all honesty, some changes may not come into force until a few months later. What I do believe though is that as the human race, we will have to change. The environment has already shown us that things can’t go on like they were and on some level I think that the virus was a sign of some higher entity to make us stop. STOP. So the planet can breathe. So we can breathe.
Are you changing A.C. (after covid)? Have you already put plans into place? Now is not the time to make rash decisions but now is also the time to reconsider what we could do better in our lives. Covid has held a mirror up and shown us our mortality. We are not invincible. We can be broken and we can be squashed. Our lives are short, they are precious and valuable and not to be wasted or taken for granted. So, tell me again: what will you change A.C.?