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Sometimes, my mind would wander, running around in a lush green park, as the cool breeze hits my face. At other times, I’m in the club, loud music blaring through the night as I try to have the best weekend party. Strangely, the most common dreams these days are of grocery shopping at hyper mart and taking a flight home.
A year back (to say, even few months back), all of us would have found the idea of not moving out of our houses for straight two months bizarre and practically excruciating. These feelings haven’t changed much even now. I’m still waiting for the day things will be back to normal, assuming it will take more than a few months. This thought disheartens me, and I know it does the same to most of us. But we’re more dynamic than we thought we were. Few weeks after the dust had settled we have our stay-home routines, though not very satisfying, but still we follow it and have successfully kept ourselves from insanity. I would raise a glass for everyone who have stayed put. We’re stronger than we thought we were.
And life’s not just about staying afloat for most of us. If I were to speak for myself, there have been incidents during lockdown that has deeply affected me, that have led me to introspect and has given me the time and space to do something more with myself. And now that I think about it, I realize that it just takes few moments of not having to run around, which can change a lot.
For example, being locked-down has taught us self-restraint. When the mind wanders into happy places and we know that it won’t be possible for some more weeks, we say to ourselves “soon, but let’s not wander any more”. We quickly realize its best to stop day dreaming because if anything, it will make us more desperate. Most of us who would carelessly binge on take-aways and order-ins, now think twice. For the sake of safety and lesser risk, such cravings can be asked to wait for few more weeks. For those of us who could not help having a Fri-yay night out, now soothe ourselves with minimal home arrangements. When the hoarders started hoarding and most of us couldn’t avail home deliveries, we practiced self-restraint by rationing our food and supplies.
Another example is how lock-down has taught us to be more grounded. We now know what it takes to cook our own food – day in and day out. We now know what it takes to keep our houses organized, our plants alive, our toilets clean – what it takes to have the life we were taking for granted. We now understand the importance of our staff, our mothers, our help – a harsh way to realize, but I’m glad we are starting to.
For some of us, lockdown is a healthy spell. All the mid-night cravings for ice-cream have suddenly disappeared (I’m only talking for people who have stopped ordering-in to minimize contacts). There are no bi-weekly beer and cheesy pizza parties (which, as a matter of fact, reduces weekly calories by 3 to 4 thousand). How unhealthy can you get by eating only home cooked meals? Some of us have embraced running again (or started), perhaps as a way to experience some adrenaline rush in our moribund lives, but definitely doing their body a favour. For some of us, stress levels have reduced, and as a result our mind and body is actually showing the good after-effects.
Another example is how this period is giving us an opportunity to be with our families like those who had travelled just before travel restrictions and are locked down with their parents or in-laws. It’s wonderful how, after (probably) years of staying in separate cities and being able to meet only for a few days in an year (while juggling vacation and family visit in meagre paid leaves), a family reunites. With all the child-hood habits kicking in and growing nostalgic in the room we grew up in, we discover what’s been long lost. It’s true that few things never change.
Of all the positives of lockdown, the one closest to me is how this has given us the time and space to improve. Improve in anything – personality, skill, habits. We are all having our own unique experience during this phase as a result of choices of our organization, our loved ones, our family or our friends. And as a result, we are learning different things to do what we should do to get through this. Some of us are learning new skills – music, cooking, singing and much more. Some of us have started to understand the importance of introspection. Some of us are able to understand our shortcomings, as being locked up with a definite set of people repeating certain behaviors over and over again drives us to find a better way of living. Some of us have taken weekly challenges of self-love and care.
I know these are tough times. But I’m glad to see so many strong people around, who wake up daily and do what they need to do and are still hopeful. I’m glad that so many of us are using this time to be our better version. I’m so thankful to technology that’s available to make this phase so much easier. I’ so glad some of us are able to find the artist, the writer or the cook hidden in them. I’ so glad that some of us are cultivating healthier habits.
I’m glad, and we all should be, for being so strong.
I'm Bhavini. Welcome to my blog!
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