The reality is this is our first experiences of a global pandemic, and if you’re anything like me you’ll be experiencing a whirlwind of emotions that are taking you on quite the rollercoaster. The waves of anxiety and exhaustion from the unknown, paired with the random bursts of happiness and hope can be very confusing. I have found myself finding a lot of different ways to distract from reality, from the endless hours of Netflix, to the random craft projects, when in actual fact I forgot that everyone is in the same boat and all of my feelings were and still are completely valid. After writing down an extensive list of all the emotions and feelings I have experienced, I decided to focus on the four that reoccurred most frequently: uncertainty; hope; frustration; relief.
Throughout the pandemic, the constant questions and back and forth on what we can and cannot do, alongside the completely foreign entity of the virus itself, added to the heavy feelings of uncertainty. The desperate need for clear instructions that never really came coupled with our entire ‘normal’ being turned upside down just made everything even more terrifying. Uncertainty is one of those weird feelings that sends the brain spiralling into a whirlwind of anxiety that is a struggle to keep a handle on in these unprecedented times.
Those brief glimmers throughout the pandemic have kept us all on a path with the end in sight. With each easing of the lockdown bringing us closer and closer to normality, the sensation of hope is the one thing that keeps getting stronger. As the numbers fall and normality begins to resume, hope is the constant that stayed with us throughout and helped guide us through all the uncertainty.
Mixed signals and the not knowing when or how we will resume life as we once knew is what really made this whole pandemic so frustrating. The way we went through this whole thing not clearly knowing when we can do something so simple as hug our friends and family created so much frustration towards the unknown.
Every time the statistics decreased and the simple pleasures that we once took for granted become one step closer, a little bit of relief washes over us. Alongside all the hope that we all felt at various points across the lockdown, the relief that we are getting through this together makes us all that little bit stronger.
There is no rule book on how to cope with the emotional journey of a global pandemic, we are all learning to accept any emotion coming our way. But the most important thing to focus on is that we are all on this crazy Covid coaster together, together.
Words: Hannah Game, Storehouse Content Team, @hjgamephotography