Covid-History Item Type Metadata
Crumlin Northern Ireland
When did the impact of COVID-19 first occur to you? How did your reaction to COVID-19 change between then and the first case in your town?
Around 13th March 2020, I was very panicked, this lasted around 3 months before it began to reduce, however, it was always there, an undercurrent of anxiety, by the time someone in my town tested positive I was getting used to it, hearing it was getting closer spiked the panic again.
How is your life different now than it was before the pandemic?
I work from my home, (I am a therapist so thankfully can work remotely), so no commute or mixing with other humans for social interaction. I stay home at the weekends rather than going for dinner or out with friends, all my shopping is done online. For many months I washed my groceries before putting them away but I stopped that as it was becoming obsessive and not good in the long run. I exercise less as my urban rebounding class isn’t on, so go the odd walk, but I have less time as I work more due to increased demand for mental health therapists. I am homeschooling my 16yr old daughter, she has basically missed almost a year of being in school.
How are you feeling? What are you doing to relieve stress?
I feel low mood setting in the longer this goes on, we are still in lockdown at present, there is a sense of apathy and lack of motivation, though this fluctuates daily. The undercurrent of anxiety is always there. I try to set mini goals daily to help, go a walk, do laundry, post a letter, meditate or listen to a podcast. I also now minimise what I listen to on the news or social media.
What have you noticed has changed in your community since the outbreak? What has surprised you?
Food banks have been set up, I was surprised at how many people needed them. Also, the judgements made by people on others, so many people lack empathy, then again stress brings out our selfish side.
Are you a business owner who has had to close? If you are still open, how have you had to adjust how your business operates?
I work for myself as a CBT therapist, thankfully I can work from home and my workload has increased exponentially. It is a struggle working from home as others live here too, it is also difficult to detach from work at the end of the day, easier to take work home with me because I’m already there, I try to go a walk after work to detach but that doesn’t always work. On the up side I’m saving a lot on fuel and coffees that I would usually buy. I miss the social interaction with clients and colleagues.
Are you an essential employee? What do you do? What precautions are being taken at your workplace? What precautions are implementing at home?
Yes, I am included as essential as I work in mental health. I work remotely from home, I do see some clients face to face, those who cannot engage remotely, I wear a visor, space seats 2 meters apart and sanitise the room in between sessions.
Are you an employee who has been laid off or furloughed? Were you able to get unemployment? Were you able to retain your health insurance?
Are you working from home? What adjustments or challenges are you experiencing?
Other people live here too, I ask a lot of them when I take over the kitchen for the day, they have been great but its not ideal. Also, more interruptions occur, deliveries, people needing in to eat etc. Not being able to switch off, sitting eating dinner at the same table you where at when you just talked someone out of taking their life, it’s tough!
Do you have children at home? How’s it going?
Yes, well a 16 yr old daughter and a 22 yr old son. My daughter is struggling with homeschooling, she is experiencing a lot of anxiety and has got behind with her work. My son is completing his final year of uni from his bedroom, he’s on top of his work but feels a low mood setting in at times because there’s very little to do, not enough stimulation for both of them.
If you’re a student, was school canceled? Were you able to complete your studies online? Do you think you’ll be back on campus in the fall?
Did you have to postpone any major life events? (e.g. Graduation, wedding, major birthday) What did you do instead?
Yes, my 40th birthday is next week, I’m having a small celebration instead and plan to do something bigger when the pandemic ends. My son graduates this year, it’s going to be virtual, this I’m most sad about as he won’t get to walk across that stage to get his diploma, after all those years of hard work. He also missed his internship last summer, he did it all online from his bedroom rather than living in Edinburgh for 3 months. We can’t go on a family holiday this year, one we wanted to take before our son leaves the nest for a new job in Cambridge. My daughter also missed out on big celebrations for her 16th, and my husband missed celebrating his own birthday and of course the celebrations for the football team he has supported all his life winning the premier league in 2020 - LFC. All celebrations have been at home, together, and I guess that’s all that matters
Do you have animals? Did you adopt a pet? How have they impacted your day?
We have a cat, Hobi, she is very loved by us all, she broke her leg during all of this and luckily our vet was still open and able to treat her. When she sits on your knee for a cuddle you can’t help but smile, and feel loved
What positive things did you contribute to or notice take place?
We got plenty of work done to our home, new kitchen, new windows, a wee cat flap for Hobi. We have spent even more time together as a family in our beautiful home, we are so blessed. My own work with clients brings a sense of purpose, being able to help others through it all too.
Did you or someone you know contract COVID-19? What was it like?
My best friend had it, she said it felt more like a tummy bug, not the usual symptoms you hear of, she has autoimmune diseases and had been scared but thankfully it didn’t hit her too hard.
If you lost someone during the pandemic, how did you celebrate their lives?
What do you wish you knew before the pandemic began?
That I didn’t need to wash my groceries as much.
What would you want future generations to know about the 2020 pandemic? How would you recommend they prepare for it?
Put plenty of effort into protecting your mental health, prioritise it, go walks, meditate, things are not as bad as you think they are, it will pass.
How do you think this pandemic will change how we behave going forward? What will the “new normal” look like?
Hopefully people will be more hygienic, probably things like hand shaking etc will take a while to get back to, most people a bit more cautious, only for a while though, people forget and go back to the old ways soon enough, I don’t think it will be that different.
Is there anything else you would like to add that hasn't already been asked above?
I’ve noticed the amount of people that do not follow the guidelines, and not just members of the public being selfish, I mean schools opening when they should be closed, teachers in classrooms closing windows and doors when they should be open (according to guidelines), many other establishments not adhering to the rules yet members of the public being blamed, the lack of leadership in governments and terrible decisions made, especially by our education minister to the detriment of our children, inexcusable!
Southern Adirondack Library System
Southern Adirondack Library System
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“Dee,” Leaving Our Fingerprints on History, accessed December 8, 2021, https://fingerprints.sals.edu/omeka/items/show/333.