Facebook keeps sending me alerts to remind me I haven't added to my page for a while. There doesn't seem to be a button to respond "My world has stopped".
I was going to write "The world has stopped", but then I realised that that's not true. There are plenty of people still working, just in more dangerous conditions than they ever expected. But for me, each day is like the one before it. At home, eating and drinking interspersed with the same walks that, even in the beautiful countryside in which I live, are quickly becoming boring and mundane.
I feel almost uncomfortable writing about my grief in a time of national pain. If statistics are to be believed (?) the week before Easter was the most deadly for the UK in 20 years. To date 18 thousand deaths have been attributed to Covid-19. Approx 1 in 10, or 1800, of these were in people with no pre existing medical condition. Even in those that have other illnesses, they might not be things they would expect to die from. In short, people are dying, thousands of people having their lives cut short. All of these are someone's son or daughter, and many are someone's mum, dad, grandparent. But I write for Lauren, and for all of us that are suffering. It's not much but it's the only thing I can do at the moment.
I was actually looking forward to school work resuming. It felt like a move forward, towards some sort of normal. The reality was crushingly disappointing. Arguing with two children over break times, computer science and the fact that yes we were doing Joe Wicks everyday, is not a step forward. It is just another bit of the drudgery that is "social distancing"
Part of me is happy that we are all together at home. We are healthy and I don't have the worry, or quite often blind panic, of the kids being 2 minutes late home, or not answering their phone when they are out. But it also means there are minimal distractions, and plenty of time to sit in Lauren's room shouting obscenities at a god I don't believe in.
There is obviously also the worry of the global pandemic. Bizarrely after all that we have been through, it still seems so far away, something that happens to other people. I see the news but it has stopped having an effect, just statistics and sad stories of other people. I feel their grief but that doesn't mean that I believe it will happen to me. Part of that is probably because I am cocooned away from the world, furloughed from work. I haven't left the village I live in since mid-March and haven't stepped inside a shop for a similar time. The husband is getting what we need from local shops and we have had a few food deliveries. I look forward to a time when I wont need to wash everything coming into the home, and treat cardboard like an unexploded bomb.
Friday night has become treat night, when we pick up a take-out pub tea from the local pub. I think the Husband just likes the fact that he can stand inside the pub when he goes to collect it! Saturday night is film night. We are watching the Marvel movies in chronological order, with the grand finale timetabled for Lauren's birthday in July. Everyone who knows her will know she loved Marvel films.
For now we will just enjoy the simple pleasures, be thankful that we are all healthy and look forward to day when we can hug our friends again. I hope that when that day comes we do not rush back to the way things were, but instead embrace a new normal, a normal that remembers what is important and disregards the empty and vapid.
"In a gentle way you can shake up the world" Ghandi.