A poem and story about my bittersweet quarantine experiences
Imprisoned in my own
spacious, vibrant and cotton-candy colored
Unable to feel the freshness
of nature and touch the wind
with my nose and face.
I’m longing to hug my family,
embrace my beloved friends,
fly freely as an eagle,
and become an “unmasked” woman.
I crave the sound of people,
the calmness of the library,
the cool touch of nature,
and the joys of liberation.
Lockdown is like prison,
in your home instead of
a dark and ominous reformatory.
The pandemic changed my life forever, both positively and negatively. During the first lockdown which was implemented in March 2020, I had both a simple and challenging time coping with "the new reality". Grieving the loss of my life was like grieving the loss of a great friend and family member. It wasn't easy as a piece of cake and it required mental strength to find a way to shine during those dark and surreal times.
The first bit of the pandemic was baffling, frustrating and anxiety-provoking. I couldn't believe that that was the new reality and I felt like I was treated like a prisoner. All I wanted was my life; nothing else. Not the truth, not the rules that were put in place and not my home; just my life that I enjoyed living. That being said, I managed to find my own way of shining through this pandemic, once I started to understand the situation a bit better. Even though I began to grasp the situation little by little each day, it still didn't free me from those feelings that I had; it meant that I had an easier time accepting it. Movies, books, puzzles, my phone, music, arts and crafts, the park, food, my bed and my computer were my lifesavers. According to my mom, dad and therapist, I dealt with this like a "heroine"; many of my friends with mental health disorders and other special issues had an extremely difficult time which led to personal ramifications like excessive hospital visits, outbursts and a higher level of emotional neediness from friends who were not.
As the months went by, I began to understand it more, but I started to develop a certain level of tolerance that made me want to "deny that there was still a pandemic until a vaccine was found, developed and distributed. At least, I was no longer felt like a caged animal or criminal locked up in a cell and got to go on socially distanced outings with friends and family, enjoy more time outdoors, go to the store and shop and take more of my favourite bus trips to different neighbourhoods in my region. I didn't have to wake up at 6 am to go to work every day, which was quite a treat for me! The summer was one of the best parts of this pandemic.
Our first lockdown in Canada ended in June 2020 and then we went into a second lockdown in December 2020. It was definitely annoying, but I said to myself, "girl, you did it before. You can do it now!" At least I had the chance to hibernate in my colorful, cozy and quiet apartment than a cage or in an uninviting mental health shelter. I got to do what I wanted, which was nice. I didn't have to rush to get anywhere and worry about being late to certain appointments, classes and meetings, which was a blessing for someone like me to fears being reprimanded.
In January 2021, my residence experienced a terrible outbreak that lasted until February 17 2021. I couldn't leave the building, accept to do my laundry, take the garbage out and pick up parcels/food deliveries at the front desk/lobby. When the outbreak got worse, I couldn't do any of those things with led to anxiety, frustration, sadness, irritability and peace at the same time. I love moving around and doing things, but I also love being lazy in my apartment. Once I found out that the outbreak ended on February 17 2021, I was happy like a hopping frog; I became a free person who regained the opportunity to go shopping, be with friends and smell the fresh air, even in the winter.
On March 21 2021, I found out that the residence had a second outbreak on one of the floors. When I found out about that from my mom and the supervisors, I was miffed; I couldn't believe that we have to go through this again, especially since most people in the facility are vaccinated. I remember having a mental health crisis to the point where I had to call 310-COPE and speak to my caseworker, to minimize the mental disruption for the remainder of the day. Just like in regular community-wide lockdown, I'm able to go for walks, pick up parcels/food deliveries, do laundry, go on essential outings and do all the things that I love doing at home. It's both anxiety-provoking and relaxing, because I get to relax more, but I never know when it will end, which can make me apprehensive. Hopefully, it will end some time soon, but I'll just have to hang in there until I receive the news from my family and the managers/staff of the building.
I got this, because I'm a strong woman! No matter how difficult it is, I'll get through this, because it's happened before and I got through it just fine.
About the author
Poetess, visual artist and lifestyle/quiz writer! My pastimes include reading, sleeping, gaming, music, fitness, etc! Be yourselves, be kind and value life! Let's connect and be friends!
My IG accounts: @tdwrites24 & @tdcreates97