Coronavirus Is Not A Competition

Life has changed as we know it, we’re all grieving for a life we had 6 weeks ago. Nobody really knows when it’ll come back and it’s leaving us all in a weird place. The sun shining is a welcome addition to lockdown. It brings a smile to faces, allows people to find some joy when looking out of their windows. It’s slightly soothing. I can only imagine how much more difficult this would be if we were faced with darkness inside and outside.

What I have found frustrating, however, is the competition that has been created by social media/the media in which the game is judging how we as humans are getting through this.

“You must use this time to better yourself!” “Learn a new language!” “Learn a new musical instrument!” “Get out your yoga mat and lose 15lbs in a day!” The last one is of course completely fictional but the rest I have heard/read so frequently I could hear them in my sleep. The natural highs you can get from being super productive are incredible – we know this – but can it be maintained throughout a crisis like this? I am thrilled for the people who are able to harness their energy in to these things every single day and I hope that they really do feel as good as they portray on Instagram because what a life. I’m sure many do but keeping so 10/10 every day is exhausting.On the other end of the spectrum are all of those people who cannot get out of bed, they can’t shower, they don’t even want to open their eyes because they have been absolutely destroyed mentally due to no human contact. The weight of this crisis feels like it’s on their chest and they cannot physically move. It is exhausting.

Then we have those in the middle of this, not sure what to do or how to react, every day changing their response. One day making banana bread, the next crying all day in bed because they haven’t seen their family in person in 4 weeks. A constant see-saw of emotions which is, arguably, what makes the lows super low and the highs super high. I sit in this middle area with so many others and it’s exhausting.

Everybody is struggling and everybody is tired. Can we all be kind to each other, remember that from a few weeks back? It was more than a fad, more than changing your profile pictures on social media accounts, it has to be present every day. It has to be now, because we all need it more than ever. We need to change the narrative, there’s no right way to get through this. Let everyone get through this time in whatever way they can, if that’s being on a juice cleanse and buying a treadmill, if that’s drinking 5 bottles of wine a week and watching all of “Killing Eve” in one day and not leaving their bed, do not judge them.

A global pandemic is not a competition, there are no prizes. The only way to win is to survive. Take care of yourself in whatever way makes you feel the most okay and one day this will all be a memory – one which hopefully we have all learned from.