Hiya, so if you haven’t been submerged under a rock, you will be aware that by now the UK (and most countries) are pretty much out of lockdown. And while it hard for many of us to contemplate this having happened, I feel we have all gained a deeper and new insight into this world.
Personally I am still very much in denial of this having happened, even really this affects me on a day to day basis! As whilst this “new normal” is far closer to the normal we knew before lockdown, compared to in the midst of it all, there are considerable differences in the way which we experience things now, which we had initially taken for granted.
Even the experience of walking into a shop now is still completely different to anything like it used to be (please don’t get me started on those who won’t follow the arrows). Then there is the quew we become confrounted with, if we attempt to go into any shop in town after 10am. Not to mention that face masks will be mandetory from the something of JULY. I am not sure what was wrong with introducing this in June, May or even back in February. Probably deemed as too precautionary for this government. Though I won’t delve too far into politica yet, as that can wait another minute or two…
But even concerning our own homes, we have had to make so many adations to our ways of life in such a short spam of time. Because lets be real- who reading this actually knew how “zoom” worked back in January? Meanwhile businesses are obviously having to be more innovative, by making various changes to how they function. But really this post is more about the ways in how my perseption of -well life- has changed, and how I feel others may have too.
Therefore here is a list which is personal to myself, however I feel that many may have similar feelings toward this as well. It would be cool if you could let me know in the comments if there are any of these which you do relate to or not, or other ways in which your vision may have changed, adapted or evolved.
1. Life is too short for being stuck in a place where we don’t like:
Sometimes this is inevitible and if we cannot safely get out, then sometimes it is best to wait. However if we know that we can get out, or are able to gradually get out of a difficult situation (which is true in most cases), then it is important to do so. What I mean is that if you felt a strange selse of relief when certain things in life came to a halt at the beginning of the lockdown, and this feeling persisted throughout lockdown and maybe you have a genuine sense of dread about returning, then chances are you are in a situation which you don’t want to/shouldn’t be in.
Now in my irrational mind, this would mean to get out of this situation ASAP. Though I recognise that this cannot always be practical; and if you had/have a job which you strongly dislike but where it would be too risky financially to suddenly leave, then I would advise finding another job, while still working in the place where you dislike.
Therefore although it cannot always be practical to make drastic changes to your lifestyle, it is important to think about whether there is anything which you are finding very difficult which isn’t completly inevitible, while having conversations about this. This way you can think about making changes, so that things can improve in the long run.
2. Teachers aren’t even that bad
So not going to lie, but I always presumed that most teachers would go into school, teach for say 3 hours, then spend the rest of the day lulling about in the staff room. All while drinking tea, eating biscuits, drinking more tea- oh and gossiping about us lot. But really, (though I’m sure they do a lot of this) they are also incredibly dedicated, at least where I study.
Because having heard about so many teachers going into school during, well the height of this pandemic, looking after the children of key workers (who would have had a more proportionate chance of having the virus coming to think of it) made me realize that in reality, teachers are more than just these lazy people who sit and slurp tea. Also they have all been able to keep on providing us with relevent work, have continued to give constructive feedback, and have even been checking up on us. In fact I even heard that many are working much harder now than before, because now that “school” had moved online, a lot of teachers have been receiving messages, questions and even work to mark; at all manner of times. In one incident, a teacher was being sent “work” from the year 7s! (basically 11-12 year olds) at as late as ELEVEN PM!!
To me that is compleatly unacceptable, but it goes to show how they are genuinely so keen and devoted to their jobs. Yup, I never thought I would be saying this either.
3. We need to take things more slowly
So over lockdown obviously things haven’t really been the easiest, however small things which previously may not have excited me as much, have really become more appreciable. And while we are super busy, we often don’t really have the time to settle down and appreciate these. Rushing about from one place to another can genuinely be pretty draining, and we don’t always realize this.
Honestly, sometimes it can be so nice just to sit down and have a chat and play a board game, rather than immersing ourselves in some form of work from start to finish- just because we feel that we ought to. Definitely something I feel I should be working on; though when I do take things more slowly, I often feel guilt at not being productive enough. Anyone else with me?
4. We need more equality
Apart from any other damage this pandemic has done directly and indirectly, it has definitely enhanced the sheer amounts of inequality within society. Which seriously suggests that something needs to be done- urgently- to address this! It has been found that “People of Chinese, Indian, Pakistani, other Asian, Caribbean and other Black ethnicity had between a 10% and 50% higher risk” of dying from this virus “compared to white British people.” I think this is due to the disproportionatly high number people of ethnic minorities living in poverty. Which is unjust for two big reasons, why on earth should those of a different race still be stuck in this poverty cycle, and why should the gap in wealh be dividing to this extent?
For example team of researchers looking specifically at Massachusetts found that “areas with “widespread economic segregation and heavy concentrations of poverty, people of color, and crowded housing” had higher mortality rates compared with everywhere else from the beginning of the year through April 15.” These are in communities where many people are working “essential jobs” where they have no choice but to be in crowded conditions, or having to live in crowded conditions. This is also the case for Lecister, where many workers from ethnic minorities are working in “sweatshops”, where conditions were not only extremely overcrowded, but where people were forced to carry on working when they knew that themselves, or a family member was affected. Furthermore some are paid as little as £3.50 an hour, which is less than half the adult minimum wage.
Another major concern is how this is going to affect how children from lower income households will be effected regarding school. As it is most likely those belonging to high income ones will have had access to sufficient technology to enhance their learning, parents with more time to help them with their studies (not having to spend say 9+ hours in a supermarket) as well as having the luxury of a garden so that they can get the fresh air they require. Why on earth is this the case? That to this day people DON’T even have an equal opportunity, and the gap in wealth is going the wrong way- becoming wider! It would be nice to be able to say that the amount of wealth someone has doesn’t affect their health at all…
Now there are many more issues I could potentially go into, but as the issue of inequality is going to be enhanced in the next few weeks, months and years, I hope that we as country and the rest of the world can begin taking steps, leaps in the right direction to reduce some of these burning injustices.
5. People are mainly nice
So I have been amazed to see the genuine kindness of so many people. And I think that this has been a period of time for it to be shining through many people.
In my local area for instance I know that thousands of people signed up to volunteer, to a variety roles including answer phone calls of those who are isolated, while helping with tasks like shopping. I personaly signed up for this, but there were so many others who did, and it turned out that a family member was going to help the lady who I had been associated with, meaning that I wasn’t needed. Nevertheless it was so good to see so how that there were more than enough volunteers in my local area to help those who had been aligned with this programme. Not to mention how so many people had volunttered to help the NHS, including students and retired members; just out of sheer willpower for these people.
Meanwhile the majority have and are continuing to act sensibly by keeping to the lockdown restrictions, while looking out for families etc. Not to mention all the brilliant work from our key workers!
6. We have horrendously been underestimating the hard work of many essential workers
Ok, before recently I had always respected the NHS, however I had no idea about their sheer dedication to what they do, as well as their pure gratitude and virtuosity toward others. Now no one can sensibly say that this is “just a job” and they are doing this because they have to, because every day they have been putting their life out there in order to help save others. When the reward for those working day in and day out being just roof over the head and enough to eat without any luxuries (earning as little as 22,000 a year)- nobody can say they’re choosing to do such a demanding, lengthy and terrifying job for the money.
And it’s not just those working in healthcare. Now this sounds a little cheesy, but how about those who serve us in supermarkets? Though this might be categorized as fairly “unskilled”, try to imagine how some of those highest paid people in the financial sector would cope if they were chucked into a supermarket a couple of months ago, and were expected to provide for all customers demands. Precisely! We take these people for granted every single day and it isn’t at all fair when we dismiss them as being “low-skilled” or even “lazy” when in reality they probably work harder than many of these very wealthy bankers!
Now I hope that many reconsider the rewards earned for different jobs. Because anyone who doesn’t work as a front line worker should now realize that actually what they do should be highly commendable. Thus they should receive a higher wage! It has sadly been the way for many years, but thinking about it- it doesn’t really make sense…
7. We all need to take a step back and have a look at what is going on in the WORLD
So if these last few months you have found time to take a step back and reflect on the world you are in, then I doubt you will have regretted the extra knowledge gained. And while this has been a small time really for us to learn more about the world we are in, I hope that this will continue after lockdown! As though not all issues can feel as dramatic as this one simply because they don’t all directly affect you, I hope that in the future we will continue to emphasise with other problems occurring in the world.
Though if I am brutally honest, I fear that there will be less awareness and activism as we do leave lockdown, especially on mainstream media. I can understand why and how “clap for carers” came to a hault, but I hope that general awareness won’t die down.
But I think it is so important to stay on top of what is going on the world, and I feel it is much easier to do so now. Now someone as a blogger who freqently uploads posts relevent to politics, it is easy for me to stress the importance of “staying on top of what is happening”, however I think that everyone can genuinely have some basic understanding or knowledge. When there there are so many posts online, even filling people’s instergram stories now, it is very easy to know what is going on in the world.
8. Things can change so drastically
Yep, lockdown definitely made us have to adapt to a new kind of lifestyle all too suddenly. This felt like anything but how changes should happen in life, which is true. You would hope that any change faced in life would be steady. Nevertheless I feel that often things within our personal lives by accident or purpously, things can change very drastically. This might feel very strange and scary, but I think that knowing this and knowing that things can change, having experienced the past few months, can prepare us and make us more willing and able to adapt later on.
So I hope that some of you may agree or relate to some of these. Now I feel that what has been learned is obviously more complicated than this, and these few points are just ones which I have thought of, at this time. Meanwhile I think every individual has taken this in, in a slightly different way, depending on who we are and depending on our way of life. Meanwhile the world has had to tackle this in a seemingly unique way, because well- this whole pandemic has been “unprecedented”.
But I do hope that these lessons will be sustainable, and it can be as a push forward towards a better society.