This blog post has been bloody hard to write! Not because there isn't information out there about COVID-19 to get content from. Not because I don't have the time. Not because my internet is down or computer broken. It's been really hard because my brain seems to have lost its ability to function!
I'm generally quite resilient and positive. My mantra is 'It will all be fine'. I keep calm and carry on but this situation has floored me.
Now I'm much much better off than most people out there. I'm a military wife whose husband has a good income and I have an extremely supportive family who certainly won't let me or my animals starve. I have fabulous friends helping me with my animals and generally trying to keep my spirits up. I don't have children to home-school or close relatives fighting on the 'front line' trying desperately to stall the havoc that COVID-19 is causing - I applaud all those key workers - NHS, supermarket staff, delivery drivers, bin men .... the list goes on. You are all wonderful and I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for what you are doing for the rest of us.
So I should be loving the fact I've finally got that holiday at home! Something I have wished for is a week at home to chill, watch TV, catch up on all my admin, do some studying which I LOVE, and sleep! So why am I mooching around my house with no enthusiasm for anything? Why has it taken me 3 days to finally sit down and write this post?
I think the answer is that I feel completely hopeless! I think this is something that lots of us able-bodied and grounded people will be feeling because of this bloody awful virus! I saw my last few equine clients yesterday and have closed all clinics for the foreseeable future. As mentioned above I'm in a good position financially thanks to my various safety nets, but I'm watching the businesses of friends and family come crashing to the ground, with no income for the foreseeable future, nowhere to go and nothing to do. I'm watching death counts rise knowing that people are losing their loved ones. That people are dying terrible deaths alone as visitors aren't allowed. That wonderful medical staff are witnessing it all first hand. And here I am miserable that I finally get that wish to stay at home. I know I'm not the only person feeling deflated and useless as well as extremely worried about where this is going to take us all.
So! The point of this moaning, rambling blog is to try and pep myself up and give you all some ideas on how you can keep your spirits high during this truly crappy time.
We do get to STAY AT HOME!
I can't stress how important this is. I do still go out to tend to my horses and to shop for my vulnerable family members who are isolating. It is a very weird world out there at the moment. Empty streets, empty roads, people keeping their distance - just as they should be. Supermarkets with empty shelves, their employees exhausted trying to meet demand. Trust me you are missing nothing! So what can you be doing with all this free time in your four walls? Here is what I have planned for the next few days, jobs that I always claim I have no time for that I know finally do and I'm going to embrace it for what it is, a chance to declutter and get on top before it is all over and life returns to its usual chaotic craziness!
Clean the house! Ok so my house is never a tip but it gets untidy. Corners get dusty, bags remain unpacked for longer than they should be, shoe racks become disorganised and the airing cupboard... well! I mean what is even in these bags!
Blog - I love social media and usually I post at least once a day which has ground to resounding halt over the last week. But I know i can help others, I know I can keep my clients and their horses going through this time with my knowledge so I am determined to share what I can with you all to keep spirits high as well as to keep you all moving and pain free.
Animals. Gosh where to start! I have so many I think it will have to be a separate blog but I have plans! Mainly
for Waffle - my utterly bonkers Spaniel, but the pigs, ponies and donkeys will all be getting some extra love!
Exercise - What has been truly wonderful is the plethora of fitness professionals posting videos to keep us all active. From Joe Wicks providing most of the nations home schooled PE sessions, to my fabulous friends and colleagues posting daily workouts. I will be doing a social media post to share some of these fab peeps with you - from yoga to HIIT training they are doing it all! I for one am determined not to come out of this three stone heavier and moulded to my sofa. I'm extremely luckily to have an incredible home gym and I am determined to use it!
Volunteer. So this is possibly the hardest bit. As I said I feel totally useless. Advice from my governing body has been very limited (generally pretty pants) about whether I should be working or not but patients can't come to me even if I was. But I have signed up as an NHS Volunteer, and to be contacted if the NHS needs to recruit Osteopaths in the near future. I'm also checking in on my elderly clients making sure they have everything they need as well as shopping for my vulnerable friends, parents and nana who beat me away from her door with her walking stick yesterday, not after she had ordered me to place her shop in the hall way and to take out her rubbish, bless her! This helps to keep them going and also makes me feel that I'm doing all I can do while staying safe. I'm also here for any questions or worries so please do give me a call.
Provide virtual consultations. The one way I can keep working is to provide you with the option to have virtual appointments via video call. These cost £30 for half an hour. I can chat to you about your pain, watch you move and demonstrate exercises which may help. Don't suffer in silence please do drop me a message or call me if I can help.
So I think I have given myself quite a lot to be getting on with! I thank you for reading this post. I hope it hasn't been too much doom and gloom. It has certainly helped me to write it and I hope it inspires you with lots of things to fill your time at home. It will hopefully soon be over like a bad dream and we will come out of it stronger, fitter and more organised than ever! For now, please wash your hands, stay indoors and reach out if it all seems too much. We are in this together.