I wonder what it is like for someone not in lockdown to read my posts.
A while ago I skimmed through some of my writings and wailings over the last year and it was fascinating looking at the shifts from manic productivity and elation to despair to long spaces of nothing in particular before rebounding back to a bleak introversion.
The sun is shining today and I have been granted the government sanctioned ability to meet a friend outdoors. I’ve taken advantage of this a few times and it’s actually an intense experience that continues after the initial emotional impact of reconnecting has passed. Without time constraints and the need to rush off as I used to do in my high achiever, pack as much in as possible, pre lockdown life, I can spend hours with people I care for. Realising the depths and comforts of friendships built over many years, is simply beautiful.
Time itself has become incredibly odd. There should be more of it but somehow it seems less, and it moves much more slowly and in an amorphous manner like oil in a lava lamp or the sea on a calm day. I suspect it has always been like that but humanity pummels it into a shape that mirrors our own attitudes.
I admit the common disorientation as to days and dates, which daylight saving time just made much, much worse.
My present Easter break from university threw me completely into this directionless void where I’ve floated around trying to anchor myself into a routine lit with neon headings such as ‘work on primate infanticide essay’ or ‘supermarket’ or (and this is a huge one) ‘haircut’!
I wondered if time is gobbled and forever lost by social networking where I don’t participate and just scroll blankly, or am I just getting older and more slow.
I feel akin to a monk in a cell breathing deeply and deliberately, slowing their metabolic rate as they slip into another reality.
A few weeks ago I felt anxious about the upcoming relaxations of restrictions and was freaking out about how I would cope with resuming schedules and plans and getting things done when I am so sluggish. I thought I was becoming asthmatic when I found myself getting breathless when I left the house, but realised it was just a shallow breathing anxiety about moving back into the deadlines and the groove of a faster pace.
I woke one morning and realised I had shifted into being very chilled out about plans and appointments and no longer felt resentments or hang ups about the ways of others. This was intensely liberating, although who knows if it is just another weird but necessary layer of the lockdown mode of transcendental transformation.
Two days until the shops and bars and hairdressers open but a longer wait for art galleries and museums; an odd sort of countdown and I wonder how a world where such a large proportion of people have simultaneously undergone such a similar immersive process, will find itself changed when it emerges.