With the long wait to escape from some of the lockdown restrictions finally taking place, the world is beginning to look just a little bit more familiar.
Which is fabulous; in Wales, gyms and swimming pools are open again, organised children’s indoor activities are starting again and best of all, two households are now allowed to meet indoors, which means that so many grans, grampas and grandchildren can at last hug each other.
As the guidance changed, I was contacted by my yoga teacher. She wanted to tell me that her classes can begin again and did I want a place?
My 1st instinct was to say (well, shout actually) that I definitely wanted to start classes again but with a change of venue, I had to suddenly pause and think about wheelchair access again.
Now, since we’ve been in lockdown, I haven’t had to think about that very often at all. No hospital visits, no physio or counselling, no reflexology or meditation classes and certainly no hotel escapes or visits to family.
It’s been wonderful to be back in that world again. I’ve spent a year encased in a bubble feeling like at last the whole country and I were on equal footing.
We were all at home, all in the same pot, all ‘in it together‘ but now it’s lifting, it feels really weird to be ‘going backto square one‘ as it were. It’s weird because as bits of normality start creeping in, it’s a sudden kick in the stomach that I have to be ‘different‘ again?
I know that because of the pandemic, there is now a huge push forward in allowing many more people than before to work from home, also a massive increase in video calls and conferencing which is incredible. These changes at last allow so many disabled people access to those jobs but sometimes that drive forward feels like I’m being left behind….. again.
When I had my spinal fracture, it was very difficult to come to terms with having to live a different life and I am not ashamed to say I struggled massively. I had come to terms with my chronic pain and how I now have to live my life, using a wheelchair, crutches, pacing myself ie. being different to most people.
I know how it feels to be different, to be sat in the living room for years on end, I know how it feels for my ex-colleagues to be swept back up into timetables, marking, producing lessons, meetings and reports and I know how it feels to sit there watching the world go on without me. Feeling like I was falling down the proverbial rabbit hole with no control over my life.
But the year long ‘stay at home‘ bubble has now burst and it feels like everyone else is getting back to their ‘normal‘, jumping on public transport and moving on. Where does that leave me…..?
For a few days, this really dragged me down again; back to the dark rabbit hole where I found myself falling once again, not able to see a ways out of the darkness.
Thankfully, it didn’t last long. I used breathing techniques to calm myself down, I used talking therapy to get those scary thoughts out of my head and I started looking towards the positive. My yoga teacher sent me photos of the front entrance which reassured me that I would be able to join the class.
So of course, the moment the yoga question was asked, my reply was a yes, a slightly nervous but also hopeful YES!
P.S. the class was today and it was incredible; to be able to breathe again, to centre myself and just to clear my head was wonderful and I now feel just that little bit more confident than before.
Namaste 🙏 😊