This #MadCovidDiary is a reblog from @MyNewMummyLife’s awesome blog! You can find their amazing blog here
TW: COVID and its impact on mental health.
I found it really unsettling last night when Boris Johnson announced the Lockdown. I think I’m right in saying that most of us knew it was coming, and perhaps even wanted it sooner, but it was still a shock to actually hear him explain that it was going to happen. It’s hard to put words to how I’m feeling because this is all so new to us all. When I was reading the news weeks ago, I knew what Coronavirus was and I knew it was bad, but I didn’t realise just how bad it would get. It still doesn’t feel real.
My anxiety levels are rising now. I’m starting to really worry about my husband, our children and their grandad. I’m scared if one of us catches the virus, that we might end up dying because of it. It’s definitely hard to reign in the anxiety when you hear about all those people behind the statistics who have sadly died. I think fear is something that a lot of us are feeling. I’m just trying not to let it escalate in to levels I would massively struggle to cope with.
I had to go to the supermarket yesterday to do a food shop. It’s the first time I’ve done that on my own since our daughter was born. To do it under these circumstances was difficult and surreal, to say the least. My husband is self isolating, so I really had to push myself to get out there. There was such a weird atmosphere in the store. It was quite crowded, despite government advice telling us all to stay home as much as possible. It would be easy to start moaning about people not listening or taking it seriously, but to be honest, most of them were probably there for the same reason I was – the designated food shopper for that day. Online delivery slots are jammed up for at least four weeks here as things stand today. People still need to eat. We have no choice but to go to a supermarket. I really felt for the staff there yesterday. There were no protective measures in place for them or their customers. I saw a few people wearing masks, but none of the checkout staff seemed to have any kind of protection for themselves. It must be scary and unsettling for them. And to think that only a few weeks ago, they were classed as “unskilled workers” too.
There were people in the store trying their hardest to stay at least two metres away from others. I felt so guilty whenever I’d go wandering up an aisle and someone panicked because of it. At one point, I cleared my throat and at least two people nearly shat themselves. Again, I felt guilty at how I’d frightened them, but I don’t have a cough. I was just a little thirsty. **makes mental note to take water with her on the next food shop**
Something that I wasn’t expecting to happen is that this situation has triggered some memories for me of the post partum psychosis I went through. Being in that supermarket yesterday made me really aware of everyone around me. I felt like they were looking at me. I felt paranoid. All the things I also felt during the psychosis. I remember walking around the store with the pram, only a few days before I was admitted to the Mother and baby unit. I remember thinking people could tell I was a demon or evil, or that they themselves were evil and were keeping an eye on me. Walking around the supermarket yesterday just brought that back for me. Everyone around me felt like they were on high alert, just like I was.
I’m not sure what it will be like on my next visit there. I’m anxious about how many people will be there. I’m anxious about if there will be some kind of police presence in the area I live in. It’s the fear of the unknown again. I won’t know the full facts before I set off. I won’t be able to plan properly. I’ll be anxious and I won’t feel in control. I keep telling myself to wind my neck in a bit – it’s just a food shop for fucks sake. But Anxiety brain is very much active at the moment.
My perinatal CPN phoned me today. We spoke in part on the phone and then via video chat. She’ll be ringing me again next week. She said that they are all working from home at the moment, but that they’re still here for us the best that they can be. I often catch myself wondering how long this will be going on for. I asked her about the risk of relapse and it is a possibility, but I really hope not. I think that’s why I’m going to continue to gather my thoughts via this blog. It might help me keep ahold of myself. I don’t want to lose myself all over again.
We ordered some toys from Argos that are due to be delivered tomorrow. Just a few bits to hopefully help keep the children occupied and entertained as much as possible. I still feel so sad for my son that he can’t go to nursery or go play on the swings. I know he doesn’t know any better, and probably won’t remember, but I find it very sad.
Day One is done. We’ve stayed at home as per the instructions from the government. We didn’t bother going out for a walk. It just feels too weird out there right now.
It still feels like a Hollywood apocalypse film.