I've been so angry, upset and sad lately.
Because of foolish people who apparently don't take Covid-19 seriously, we're now in a second full lockdown, that started Wednesday. Certain people decided to have large house parties, dance on the streets, go to work with cough, and whatnot.
What is the problem with using your brain and act like a responsible adult?! We're still in a pandemic that kills people, and we can't expect things to be normal.
People are still dying and the virus still hits seemingly at random and also younger people can end up in the ICU. People who survive may come out of this with pulmonary fibrosis and other serious long term health issues. How on earth do people not take this seriously?
I'm more convinced than ever that stupidity and anti-science BS is what's going to end humanity.
Some come dragging with the argument that cancer, car accidents etc kill more people. Sorry, but that's actually not relevant. Would Covid-19 not be serious because cancer and traffic accidents kill more people?
I know that personally don't want to risk getting infected. I want to live, and I want my husband to live. I want us to be well. I want the people around us to be well. With the unpredictable behaviour of the virus, you just don't know how badly your body will react to it. I'm not going to take any risks.
Infection rates started climbing rapidly in Ireland 1-2 months ago, many people asymtomatic to begin with, but in recent weeks the hospital admissions have increased at an alarming rate. And with increased community spread comes the increased incidence of serious illness and more deaths. There is now a number of serious outbreaks in nursing homes again.
So here we are yet again, in lockdown. Small businesses yet again in risk of disaster. People without income. Worry and anxiety.
In a strange way I feel more settled now that we're in lockdown. I'm not affected financially, and I felt scared, stressed and unsafe when I saw the infection rate rising each day. While lockdown is a drastic strategy, at least it is something we know will stop the spread, and that helps me calm down.
But it's difficult to be positive and believe there is a decent future. I have the music, my blog writing and my other creative projects to focus on, but it's been difficult lately to hang on to my usually quite positive mindset.
I try to support the Irish government (as long as they don't do stupid things of course). But some time ago, one of them expressed on RTÉ that "we may never get back to normal", and my world came crashing down. The hope for a post-pandemic future, to come back to normal, has kept me going. If he's right - is there a reason to keep on living? A life without social interactions, is that worth living? It would be like living in a stupid dystopian sci-fi movie.
I was upset also because I think political leaders have a responsibility to give people hope. They need to give more than bad news. Hope is powerful and can be what inspires a person to keep going instead of giving up.
I follow Simon Harris on Twitter. He's the former health minister and criticised by many for the failed healthcare system. Is there any country where the healthcare system actually works, where politicians actually care about putting money into the healthcare? I don't think so, and that's one reason why I've left the nursing profession. But I'm still quite new in Ireland, still learning about the political structures & system, and I try to be as positive as possible towards the government so far.
No matter the failed healthcare system, some week ago Simon Harris made my day. I came across one of his tweets in which he encouraged people to focus on the things we can control - our actions, our choices to take care of ourselves, limit the consumption of news and social media, stay in touch with family and friends.
With my thoughts and feelings in total chaos, I really needed to be reminded of that. I easily get stuck in negative thoughts and feelings related to other people's behaviour and other things I can't do anything about. These things will just make me miserable. So thank you, Simon Harris, for an important reminder.
A similar reminder came yesterday, at the local post office. It's a small, very nice, rural post office of perhaps 4-6 square metres. One person is allowed in at a time. The man who works there is lovely, a typical West Cork man, very chatty and friendly. I'm not sure if he's from here, but he sure is a West Cork man now!
He knows who we are, because of the local pub where we, in normal times, play music each Sunday night. This is the deal when you play music in rural pubs - everyone knows about you!
We started talking about the lockdown, and he inspired me so much. He reminded me of using your time for good things and seeing the positives instead of hyping over the news. Let's focus on what we CAN do, instead of the bad things and what we can't do. We can decide to spend our time to do good things, things that lift us up - play music, do some DIY project, learn something, or try a new recipe. Or just do something non-creative that simply makes us happy. We can choose to be happy for what we have.
It isn't easy in all situations, but we can have it as a goal. At least for me it helps to settle down, refocus and to be able to do something else than worry and be upset.
This is what I've tried to live after this year but recently I've been lost with all the bad news that just keeps coming. I really needed to hear this today!
Wherever you are in the world, one thing you can do to help your community is to shop local - this is one simple but important step to support the local businesses. Are they closed because of lockdown? Find local, independent online shops.
If you want to support Irish businesses, ditch Amazon and check this page: Shop Irish. I will add more links asap!