So, what now?
I hope you’re all keeping well during this really unsettling time.
No one seems to know their up from their down at the moment – the world is so full of uncertainty and worry. We all came into work this morning with the same ‘weird’ feeling hanging in the air. Social distancing is a scary thing – but obviously a necessary evil right now.
Richard has now been told to work from home, along with the rest of his department – so our spare room has now been converted into a mini office. Freddie is still in Nursery – although to be honest, I stopped worrying about him when I saw him exchange his dummy for the handles of the shopping trolley when we were out doing our food shop. Kids, eh? His Nursery seem to always be quite hot on hand hygiene, with bottles of sanitizer at the door to be used on entry and exit – really reassuring to see, virus or no virus!
As for us at The Briars, it is business as usual, for now at least.
We really are at the pinnacle of hygiene here – staff armed with a vast and extensive training record in health and safety, as well as cross infection control. We have handwashing facilities in virtually every room of the building, and very stringent policies in place to ensure every person that walks in here is kept as safe as possible. There’s lots of fun being had with our digital forehead scanning thermometer too, as we all undergo regular checks to make sure we are within a healthy temperature range. As I was writing this blog, I was called in for a handwashing audit and a temperature check – both of which you’ll be pleased to hear I passed! Handwashing is not the most interesting audit in the world, but it reminds you of the importance of effective hand washing, and how thorough you actually need to be to make sure your hands are squeaky clean. Like I said last week, a quick flick of your fingers under the cold tap isn’t really going to help very much, even if you do feel like you’re doing something.
The unwelcome attack from COVID-19 seems to be bringing out the best and worst in people. I hadn’t quite believed the footage of empty shelves, until I saw it myself last night when I tried to do our weekly shop. I still managed to spend an impressive amount given that a good portion of the shop was out of stock, but it was just bizarre. I’ve never ever known the shops to be like this. Without sounding too dramatic – it felt almost apocalyptic…if the end of the world calls for bulk buying eggs, pasta and chicken.
On the brighter side, it is really nice to see the postcards and leaflets people are offering out to neighbours and vulnerable people to try and help keep them healthy and safe during this period. Hopefully, once the panic buying has calmed a little, it will be easier for people to access the supplies they need. I hope the NHS staff know how much we appreciate all their hard work right now – long shifts, holidays cancelled, annual leave restricted. You are all heroes, putting yourselves on the front line to protect us and ours – thank you for all you do.
Who knows what’s around the corner? There are predictions based on what’s happened elsewhere in the world, but realistically, no one truly knows.
Hopefully by the Summer, we’ll all look back on this and breathe a huge sigh of relief that the first half of the year is over, and life will start to resemble something similar to ‘normal’. I think we all need to remember to ‘be kind’ – whether that means putting yourself into self-isolation to protect others, or just going for one kilo bag of pasta instead of three. We’re all in the same boat, we just need to ride it out together.
If you are sent home from work or school, or worried about what to do at the weekend, remember that unless you’re self-isolating, you aren’t confined to the house. We may be being discouraged from going to pubs, clubs and restaurants, but breaking up the day with a good walk outside will really help to keep the cobwebs from setting in. It’s so important to look after mental health as well as your general health – so keep talking to people, keep that fresh air coming in, and keep those spirits as high as you can.
Me personally? I’ll be baking all weekend, because for me, the best way to handle a crisis is to drink tea and eat cake.
Keep calm everyone, and carry on as best you can.
Love, Amy x