I look out the window and everything is quiet. Toronto remains in lockdown but it’s also a holiday…Good Friday. It’s ...
The whole point of having a blog is to share my thoughts and feelings and have people read them. So I’m not doing a good job of that if I pick topics to write about that people don’t want to think about. But for this post, I’ll do it anyway…the second wave of COVID-19.
If you’re still reading, thank you for that! After months of death, sickness and mental and financial hardships, many parts of my home country of Canada is gradually opening up. You can go shopping (with a mask on), visit friends and family (with physical distancing) and generally travel close by to home to enjoy the beautiful summer weather. It’s probably because of all these nice things and the hardships faced before that NO ONE seems to be talking about the second wave.
But many infectious disease experts have for many weeks now been stating that it’s not a question of when, but how bad will it be. News like this is like a punch to the gut of the world. Are we going to need to be in complete lockdown again while the weather is cold and grey? Can our mental health take this? Do we have a choice?
I don’t have the answers to any of these questions. Many experts don’t either. But that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t all be preparing. That doesn’t mean going to buy more toilet paper or getting your head shaved. I mean preparing emotionally and mentally. In a recent poll, 37% of Canadians reported that the Pandemic has had a negative or very negative effect on their mental health. This is staggering data.
As someone who has battled mental health issues before, I feel lucky that I am not one of these 37%. I have managed throughout the Pandemic. My main thing has been to focus on what I can control and try to ignore any limitations.
To avoid the “oh no, not again” mindset, I’m already starting to focus and think ahead to what I will be able to do once another lockdown comes. That way, I’ll be ready to jump in to make the most of what I have. I worry about people who don’t want to think about it because inevitably, they will struggle a lot when they have no choice but to be in isolation again.
More specifically, here are things that pop into my head that people can do right now to get ready…
– Be outdoors as much as possible…overdose on Vitamin D sunshine (especially in the morning!).
– Make your house a trouble-free sanctuary…making changes in lockdown is way harder.
– Make a financial/career plan that will allow you to be self-sustainable…there’s no guarantee that government aid will always be there.
– Make a list of activities that you enjoy that will not be impacted by being in lockdown. It’s hard to make decisions when you’re depressed so if the list is already done, you won’t have to think about it.
I hope you don’t think of me as a worry wort or pessimist. My only goal in life is to be happy. But I think also being a bit of a realist is important. We’re wired as humans to have a survival instinct. A healthy balance between that and feeling love and empathy is healthy. Enjoy the process of preparation now so you will have fun then.