How is everyone feeling about Lockdown Lifting and re-emerging into Life?

Annabel chatting to a goose from her garden in post: How is everyone feeling about Lockdown Lifting and re-emerging into Life?

I don’t know about any of you but having, all through lockdown, longed to get out and socialise, I am now feeling slightly overwhelmed by the thought of lockdown lifting and thus organising a social diary. I have got too used to being at home, in the garden, with supermarket deliveries, occasional dog walks with friends, and now that my children can visit, I am content. What more do I need or even want? Before I go on, I freely admit that I have been lucky, and I fully appreciate all that I have and that so many others have lost loved ones and jobs and do not live in a conducive environment for their mental wellbeing. However, we are now being encouraged to start picking up the pieces in an attempt to return to normal life. But what is normal going to be, and why am I not convinced about returning to this lifestyle?

Is it my confidence to venture out that has taken a knock? I would be considered, by my friends, as quite a gregarious person. However, my party spirit has evaporated – the occasional coffee or glass of wine with close friends seems to suffice my socialising needs right now. I have enjoyed waking up and not having to look in my diary to see what I have got planned. I have hardly worn my watch throughout lockdown and have been governed by my stomach and the sun or an enquiring but patient husband as to the time of the next meal.

Grace & Annabel meeting after 5 months from post: How is everyone feeling about Lockdown Lifting and re-emerging into Life?
The first meet-up with Grace after 5 months

Maybe it is the constant ‘Be wary’ messages from the government or perhaps the very varied messages coming from so-called experts on whether the vaccine works against all these new variants. Only today, I read that we are predicted to have another wave of Covid in late July/August. Is this stopping me from returning to my pre-pandemic lifestyle? We have been scared into this isolation, and our only conversation has been Covid. We don’t even have the Trump Twitter feed to rant and/or laugh about now. Our friends have stopped forwarding those endless brilliant and humorous videos. I wonder when we will return to normal conversation, not having to ask if someone is happy to be hugged, or worry about whether they are anti-vaxxers and so not mention my second vaccination date (it’s becoming as divisive as Brexit.)

I am not a natural hermit, and I have not succumbed to the completely ‘go natural’ look during the lockdown. I have been seen by the supermarket delivery man and fellow dog-walkers wearing a touch of make-up. I haven’t put on pandemic pounds as I have walked and done Yoga fairly obsessively. Nor have I gone for the baggy, slouchy look in my daily dressing. I do like to look in the mirror and see a semi-decent face smiling back. I have had more time to indulge in my skincare; taking daily collagen doses is my new thing, but I have not slapped on the makeup. A tinted moisturiser, a brush of blusher and a quick swipe of mascara has been my make-up regime in lockdown, and most days, it is just my OH that has benefitted from my small attempt at making an effort.

Annabel with her two Doodles from post: How is everyone feeling about Lockdown Lifting and re-emerging into Life?
My two devoted Doodle dogs

Amongst my friends, there also seems to be a slight fear of lockdown lifting and the same reluctance to party, book a theatre trip or go out for a day’s shopping. That suits me. Of course, I miss holidays abroad but maybe because we are all in the same boat, not going anywhere where there are sandy beaches and hot sun, I feel content in my current lifestyle. Yes, I am fulfilled with my husband, 2 devoted dogs, a good book, the radio and Netflix. I am happy to book the occasional outdoor dinner with family and friends when it gets warmer. Perhaps I will dig out a more glamorous outfit and slap on full make-up. I keep reminding myself that whilst my dogs don’t answer me back and give me unconditional love human company is essential.

In the meantime I have come to the conclusion that my first steps out of lockdown will be joyful if a little tentative but I would love to hear how you are all approaching the lifting of lockdown.

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  1. I can’t wait to be free again!
    I’ve had my two jabs so if I can’t go out now when will I be able to?
    If they were to give the injection to the 17+ group a lot of COVID spreading would be lessened and they could get on with living a normal teen type life.
    Life has to resume for all.
    Sage’s predictions have been disproved so many times but they still continue being the voice of doom.

    • I agree I hope the young can get vaccinated soon so that they can socialise as all of my children have missed that so much. I have stopped listening to the media and am just carving my own way – albeit carefully and within the guidelines. Axx

  2. I feel exactly the same! Like you, I have been fortunate, no ill-health for any of my loved ones – in fact, I became a granny in lockdown. My daughter and her family live close by. My husband was initially furloughed so was safely at home for a few months. I have been able to work from home more productively than in a huge office and not had the hassle of the daily commute (or expense of parking!). Seeing colleagues on Microsoft Teams satisfies my need for inter-action with them though I acknowledge some people have found the isolation from team-mates and office chat hard. My few close friends don’t live nearby and I do miss them. But we keep in touch and know we will meet eventually. I am by nature happy in my own company, going for walks with our terrier, talking to people we meet on the walks. We live in a pretty village in Perthshire. I think, as with life in general, it’s a case of each to their own. It’s been a return to a simpler life and I for one have embraced it.

    • Enjoy your quieter life as I am because I wonder how long it will last. I am determined though to keep life a little simpler. Axx

  3. That is amazing and encouraging – you could be describing me.

    It literally chronicles how I have been during lockdown, make up every day, wearing nice clothes, Pilates, walking (without dogs though), watching my weight, etc.

    And I now feel the same about going back to how we were. I almost feel that I can’t be bothered.

    One of the things I have not missed is the constant shopping for food, the cooking and the never ending washing of bedding and towels when we had our constant stream of visitors!

    Friends say they can’t wait to see us again and I try to sound excited but I feel happy as I am, just my husband and a few Zoom calls!

    Reading this makes me feel a lot better and that it’s probably a normal reaction for some of us.

    I look forward to hearing how you feel in a few months time!

    Thank you for making me feel I’m not the only one!!!

  4. I understand your feelings. Perhaps it’s because whilst in lockdown we were longing to get back to ‘normality’ but being in lockdown gave us the opportunity to re-evaluate what we treasure and what we used to take for granted. We have a chance to create our own ‘new normal’ given our experiences over the last year and we should seize the chance not to slip back into our old routines and only resume the things which give joy.

  5. I think many of us, pre lockdown, just got swept up with the flow of daily life and kept busy or felt we had to be busy as a way of justifying ourselves. The quieter life during lockdown I think has made us think about what and who really matters. As a consequence, there has been a re-evaluation of what we’d like the future to be like.

    I am the type of person who has to be outside. Very rarely did I stay indoors for a whole day prior to March 2020 and so when lockdown came I wondered how the restrictions would impact – surprisingly I adjusted very well (a busy job, working from home gave me structure) and like you write, Annabel, a more measured, less busy, future really appeals.

  6. I feel exactly the same as you Annabel. It’s too chilly to book tables to eat at outside, the shops will probably be very busy & I am sticking to walking with friends for the time being. Is it a confidence thing? Probably.

    • We have been safe doing things like walking with friends so maybe that is why we don’t want to change our ways for the time being. Best, Annabel

  7. I think to believe we can all return to what our lives were pre Covid is shortsighted. I have worked throughout this terrible time out in the community. It will take a very long time to be able to return to some sort of normality. I think wariness is good. It’s a layer of protection.
    I for one have cancelled and deferred holidays abroad. I would love nothing more than to hop on a plane to warmer climes. But there is too much uncertainty in other countries I may wish to travel to.
    The thing I miss the most is spontaneity. Being able to just go or do anything without thinking it through carefully.

    • I agree spontaneity does seem to have been one of the pre-pandemic joys that we have lost. Life may never be the same again but let’s hope that is positive. Best, Annabel

  8. My thoughts entirely! Like you I have been lucky in my ‘Covid year’, the worst part for me was not seeing my children and grandchildren, but now we can I am perfectly happy. The odd cuppa in a friend’s garden well wrapped up, and that is the night of happiness. I am in no rush to ‘fill my diary’ in fact I find it mildly stressful going out and long to get home, I am sure this will pass, it is just that I am not used to the noise or being around people. I think a lot of us will have bette lives after this, we will cut down on the rushing about and constantly being busy. We will have time to ‘stop and stare’ as the poet says.

    • It is amazing how many of us are feeling the same. It is as if we were on a treadmill going round and round and then it was turned off and we are loathed to get back on. Best wishes, Annabel

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