Blog post by Sarah Medina

When?

And so we wait
And the clock ticks
Time going backwards
And yet
The children grow older
And the old become frailer
And we, we
Wring our hands
And wonder
When, when
Will this all pass?

Afterthoughts (a day later)

I wrote this poem in a moment of darkness about the pandemic. I know for certain that I’m not alone in having moments like this.

The key, I think, is what to do with them. For me, writing this poem enabled me to get the negative thoughts out of my head, helping to prevent them swirling around and growing ever stronger. It doesn’t have to be poetry, though. A journal entry or just few words scribbled on a piece of paper, a picture painted or drawn, or a phone call with a friend or family member you can speak openly with – these are some ways to help and support yourself if you find yourself overcome with worries, fears or desperation about coronavirus (or anything else, for that matter).

Activity is good, too. Fresh-air activity is possibly the best – walking, cycling, running or, if you can’t be active, just sitting outside (wrapped up!) somewhere, such as in a garden, on one of the benches in the village, or in the Square … Blowing the cobwebs away.

Indoor hobbies are a great way to absorb your mind in a positive, creative way. For me, it’s crafts at the moment. In fact, I’m crocheting for England these days! (It’s a good job Christmas is coming so I can make lots of presents!) Some people love crosswords or jigsaws, cooking or baking, making or listening to music … Anything that absorbs your mind and takes it away from negative spirals of thinking is helpful.

These activities aren’t to pretend that we aren’t struggling with hard times, though. They’re just part of a ‘coping toolbox’. I personally find it most helpful to acknowledge what I’m feeling, not to fight it. If I face it and accept it, I can then let it go – using one or more of my ‘tools’ to help me. Because feelings like these do, generally, pass – like a cloud in the sky or a leaf on a flowing river. We may just need to give them a helping hand on the way.

Proviso: I’m conscious that someone reading this may have much deeper worries and anxieties than those I’m referring to in my personal reflections here. So I think it’s important to say that if things get too much, the safest thing to do is to speak to a GP for professional support.

Author: Eynsham Lockdown Editor