A Personal Reflection of COVID-19 Pandemic
A reminder to myself that I am doing the right thing by writing in this diary. The messages I have already received, from 3 different people, are enough to confirm that making this diary public in the way I have is a good thing. As this in my 10th entry I am already almost 20% through this ‘2021 project’. This week has been pretty awful mentally and not much I can really write about as I’m unsure where my mental health stands at the moment so decided to do a little reflection on the last year. In my almost 10 years of diary writing this is probably the most honest I have ever been.
On the first day of march 2020 the first confirmed case of COVID-19 was discovered in Scotland. The first confirmed case in England was much earlier on the 23rd of January. We were talking about it at work and none of us believed that it would ever spread much further than it did. Not understanding the full impact it could have, I said to my work colleagues that they shouldn’t worry too much. It’s just a few cases and nothing will ever come from it. By the end of the month the daily cases were in the 100s in Scotland alone and our country was in Lockdown.
My dad was taken to the hospital on the 2nd March so my entire world was already in shock. Everything was changing and I didn’t want anything else to change. Over the course of the first few weeks in March we were visiting the hospital every day to see my dad. It was impossible to buy hand sanitiser, even the dispensers in the corridors of the hospital were empty. My dad would spend the next few months going in and out of hospital. The first time he was in for just over a week and the longest time he spent was almost 4 weeks. I can’t count how many days in total he spent in the hospitals.
We had a drinks event with work on the 6th March and I didn’t really want to be there but my mum told me that dad would have wanted me to go, my dad couldn’t even speak. I acted as if everything was normal and it was a normal night. I really enjoyed the drinks and the company of Ben and everyone else I worked with. I just can’t believe that was the last time I was sitting in a pub with my friends. When Ben and I hugged outside before he left and we kissed each others cheek, So much more could have potentially happened that night, but I can’t think too much on what might have happened. The next day reality hit me hard. I certainly felt a spark but unfortunately it just didn’t ignite, much like a broken lighter, I got a little frustrated at myself and I shut myself down completely.
The 9th March Italy went into a Nationwide lockdown. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing on the news. Denmark was next, then Ireland, Spain, The Netherlands, Austria, France. California was the first state in the US. Germany and New York went into lockdown on the Sunday. The UK was next. I don’t think any of us was prepared for what the next 12 months would bring. Even to date the pandemic is far from over.
Monday 23rd March and I was at work, although we didn’t have much work to do. The schools had already been closed from the previous Friday but I STILL didn’t want to believe we could go into lockdown. That morning at work we had been told off for all standing too close together in the corridor by one of our managers. We had been told we needed to social distance. Just like at the last in-person meeting we had the previous week, we had to sit apart, I thought it was a little unusual. I didn’t like it at all.
I had planned to only write 1 entry on the first day of each month for the whole of 2020. I forgot to do an entry for January and February but on the 1st March I was feeling so positive and everything was going right for once in my life. I started writing about Ben when I couldn’t even confide to my diary about my dad. I’m unable to handle a crush on someone at the best of times. But by the end of March I had already written the amount I had planned for the entire year. This wasn’t just awful science fiction movie, it was real! All of a sudden I was powerless. There was absolutely nothing I could do. So I started writing more.
I am able to write these words 1 year later in hope that I never have to experience anything quite like that again. As this is my 10th entry in my ‘2021 diary’ and I am so proud of myself for getting through this. I am a stronger person. I will continue to become even stronger. That is a promise to myself!
Vaccinations at 31.4% (2%)
1 in 3 people in Scotland have had their first dose of the vaccination equating to 31.4% of the entire Scottish population. This includes over 95% of those ages 65 and over. 2% of the Scottish population have had their second dose. The First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, has said that perhaps next week some restrictions might be lifted and I think that may be to do with outdoor mixing. I’m not sure what to expect but I’m still sure that things are going the right way.