In around about an hours’ time, the UK will have completed the first week of mandated lockdown. Personally there have been highs, and fortunately so far very little in the way of lows. I know many other people and families have not been so lucky, and it is important at this small milestones to remember exactly why we are staying home. If even one person is prevented from catching and ultimately dying from Coronavirus because of the simple actions we take to stay home and socially distance, it will be worth it, a small sacrifice to our regular life which I for one are happy to make.
Now on to today. According to my phone, it is Monday today, but it certainly did not feel like a Monday as I rolled out of bed this morning. The day began, bizarrely, with a meeting reviewing our process for assessing and treating people with anxiety disorders. The meeting had been arranged long before the lockdown was on the horizon, and at the end of last week I had assumed the meeting would be cancelled as a non-urgent event.
How wrong I was. The powers that be somewhere above us told us the work still needed to be completed by a deadline in May, so the meeting went ahead. So, I spent a rather surreal hour and a half on a conference call discussing the routine management of anxiety, as we did our best to pretend a worldwide pandemic was not occurring around us.
Once the meeting was over, I received a call from one of my community nurse colleagues. With the difficulties GPs and pharmacies are having managing their patients through the lockdown, four of her patients had struggled to source important medication for their mental health.
Unfortunately, my prescription pad is safely locked away in my office, so the decision had to be made to go to the office. It is only a short drive away, ten minutes in good traffic, which is certainly was today. Once there, I found the place almost abandoned. Clearly the majority of staff are working from home. I was at the base for around an hour and say only four other people. On a normal day there would be four members of staff in the reception alone.
After writing the prescriptions and safely handing them over to the nurse, I returned home in time for lunch, left over stir fry. Once I had eaten, I had to review a patient who has deteriorated significantly since the lockdown came into place. Her usual go to activities involve shopping and going to the pub, so she is finding it difficult to be kept at home for so long.
Sarah went to the supermarket this afternoon to get supplies for her parents who are isolating for 3 months and are doing their best to avoid supermarkets themselves. Sarah was in the queue for over an hour but managed to get nearly everything her parents needed, before dropping the supplies in the garden and speaking briefly to her mum through the window.
When it came time for my walk at 5, I too had to stop by the in-laws as we still had a couple of things to drop off. As with Sarah I stayed in the garden, but as you can probably see from the pictures Darwin managed to get out. It has been a while since I have seen him, so it was great to have a quick cuddle (and receive a few licks) from him. He is a shared dog with the in-laws, usually spending half the week with us, half with them. To avoid seeing each other too often, he has been staying with the in-laws since before the lockdown. Luckily, he doesn’t appear to have forgotten me, and we have decided we will swop him over in a week of so, when he can then stay with us for as long as needed.
Dinner this evening was fish and chips (well breaded cod and oven chips from the supermarket). It was not exactly the same as you would expect from the chip shop, but it was an decent substitute in the circumstances. The plan for the evening is more friends, followed by a chapter or two of 1Q84. If I have the drive I might try and knock out a few lines of one of my books in progress as well. I have not felt like writing for a while now, I think this evening might be a turning point.