Wednesday, 29 July 2020

A different blog post - lockdown time warp lessons

At the beginning of the lockdown, I had grand plans. I was going to get all those courses I signed up for over the years done, get back to writing regularly, blog every week and be more present on social media. 

Having had a minor car accident in December 2019 I had taken a break from face-to-face shamanic healing sessions due to a knee injury. I was in the process of moving my business online and I was furloughed from my part-time job so I had more time on my hands. So that was the plan and then reality hit! 

I was still grieving for my Dad following his death in January 2020 and as I wrote in a previous blog post it was tough grieving whilst in lockdown. Although I have many useful ways to support my emotions via my essential oils and shamanism, I still noticed that I felt more stuck than usual - like my grieving was on lockdown as well. 

For me, time changed over lockdown. I have a very frenetic lifestyle with not much structure. Taking my son to college; my daughter being out on Fridays; attending networking events and my part-time job were the only really static things in my life. I fitted my self-employed work, hobbies and time out with friends around those events but when they were gone, my days merged into each other.

But I still had that extra time and I wanted to make the most of it and so I planned. I felt that the more I tried to be rigid with my time, the more I was not getting anywhere and not even getting things that I used to get done, done. What was going on?

So I tried even harder and I started to succumb to that little voice telling me I wasn't good enough. Social media told me everyone else was doing ok? Why was I finding it so tough? 

So I ripped up my plans and I stopped. I felt very apathetic but I did some shamanic work with a friend, got my emotional oils strategically placed around the house so I could grab them wherever I was and I decided to just go with the flow. 


I rediscovered my joy for doing silly things like changing the lyrics of a song for my fundraising challenge and writing for the joy of it rather than for a blog post. I stopped expecting more of myself just because I had more time. Instead, I gave myself permission to just be in that extra time. I came to realise that lockdown was not a time to expect more of myself but to fully realise that I am ok as I am. 

I feel that time has changed over lockdown. In some ways, it slowed down but in other ways, it speeded up and as I write this I can't believe that it is nearly August. My Dad died over 6 months ago but it seems only a few weeks ago. So I am going to continue to be aware of that time distortion as I continue venturing out. But I am also going to remember to take care of myself, slow down and take a breath when I need to and to fully embrace that everything is as it should be because of who I am not because of what I have (or haven't) achieved over the last 4 months. 

I know that going back to work, getting out and about more is going to feel equally surreal and weird so I am taking this realisation of what I need into those future times with me. 

So this was not the blog post I was going to write. I was going to write one that would help the re-launch of my business in September. But this is the blog post that called to me and so here I am going with the flow and writing what I feel needs to be written for me and anyone else it touches.

And following on from my post about grieving being tough in lockdown, I know that I am finding it easier to grieve now that I can do some of those honouring things I spoke about. I attended York Minster's Eucharist service last Sunday with my Mum and gave myself the space to cry whilst lighting a candle for my Dad. I also attended a wonderful Talking About Loss event last Saturday which also gave me the space to cry about my Dad in a safe space and away from my immediate family. 

I'm going to celebrate these moments as well as the fact that I did indeed get one course finished. I managed to honour my Dad and my Black ancestors with my crazy fundraising challenge and sharing my love of oils with people over the internet rather than face to face. I got to enjoy my garden more and spend time more time outside and walking with my family. I have decluttered stuff that doesn't serve me anymore and some of those courses on my list are never going to get finished because I don't feel the need to do them anymore.

I challenge you to write down all the things you have achieved, however 'small', unplanned or weird. 
  • What new joys have you discovered? 
  • What old joys have you rediscovered?
  • What have you let go off that doesn't seem to fit your life anymore? 
  • What are you not going to go back to after lockdown?
Now take the time to celebrate those things

If you want to know more about using oils whilst grieving here is a video I did for Dying Matters - Dying Awareness week - May 2020