Living Through COVID-19 Pandemic – Week 20 – Saturday 25th – Friday 31st July

Day One Hundred and Thirty-Two – Saturday 25th July

So, I actually can’t write much for today. I have a migraine. A really, really bad one. The pain in my head was so intense, that I never actually made it out of my bed or even managed to change out of my pjs. I literally just spent the day sleeping and trying to distract myself with several different tasks (which all failed)!

Day One Hundred and Thirty-Three – Sunday 26th July

Still have the migraine today but it is more manageable. I managed to get out of bed today and get dressed. A small achievement really. I spent the majority of the day designing a set of ‘love’ themed cards. I managed to get all the lettering and stamping done – which a new set of science related stamps I got – and now they’ve joined the pile of ‘cards to be painted’.

It was my turn to cook today, and though I could have gotten out of it on account of feeling so unwell, I was determined to do something proactive and essentially not let the migraine win.

I made another loaf cake! I love baking but I go in and out of phases with it. Today I made a Pistachio, Lime, and Courgette Cake with a Cream Cheese and Lime Frosting. It went down a treat and I’ll be able to add it to the ‘list of things I can successfully bake’.

I also cooked ‘Broccoli Pasta’, which involves boiling broccoli and then blitzing it in a blender with toasted almonds, parmesan, and some pasta water. It was super delicious and healthy.

With all the ‘lockdown’ cooking I’ve been doing; I’ve decided to make myself a recipe folder of all the recipes I’ve been making. Most of them I’ve either found on TikTok or Pinterest, so it would be good to have them written down somewhere.

Early night tonight though, as the migraine became more vindictive as the night wore on.

Day One Hundred and Thirty-Four – Monday 27th July

Monday again!!

Would you believe it that I actually had a busy workday today?! I kid you not, it took me about five hours to solve a really simple problem about an order that never turned up…Having to talk to various departments in the company and various people in the company that was supposed to be sending the order, I came to the simple conclusion that someone had screwed up – and it wasn’t me!

Turns out that whoever responded to me original email, didn’t properly check the req I attached and went off book ordering something that made no sense to anyone. Therefore, the reason the order hadn’t been delivered, was because it had never actually been ordered…!

Of course, when dealing with colleagues, it is important not to let your frustrations show and not to bluntly tell them they’re ‘a complete idiot’.

However, I felt quite proactive to have such a busy workday because I don’t think I’ve been that busy since the first few weeks of lockdown and it made me feel more proactive and like I had an important role to play.

I still have my migraine, unfortunately, but I figure it’ll be here till the weather starts getting a little hotter, the rain stops, and the air pressure lifts. For now, I’m just taking a fair number of paracetamols and getting special ‘migraine’ chocolate from my mum.

I have fingers crossed that it will pass soon.

Day One Hundred and Thirty-Five – Tuesday 28th July

I had an interrupted sleep with two nightmares. The first involved leeches…The second involved dead bodies buried in the garden and a suspiciously long sunset. They were both very unsettling and had me waking up through the night. I don’t feel well rested this morning. I do have a headache, but I figure it’s about a level 7 on the headache scale, and while it’s not making me feel particularly good, it’s no longer a migraine.

Today I finished reading ‘Dear Child’ by Romy Hausmann. It was such a strong read and really embodied the word ‘thriller’. It was very dark, cold, and compelling. I was very invested in the book and the story being told. This book was an impulse buy from Waterstones and having now read the book, I’m glad I splurged on it.

I’m in the office this afternoon. There are a couple more people in than usual, so I am being more vigilant in sanitising my hands and keeping my workstation clean. I still bring in my own bottle of juice, and I have lunch before I come to the office, so that I minimise the chance of touching something that might be contaminated.

Our Head of H&S is doing a walk around the office this afternoon to decide whether phasing back to work is the thing to do or whether that would encourage the spread of COVID-19.

I also got another card sale from my Etsy shop, which was awesome because I’ve kind of fallen into a slump of no sales and I wasn’t sure how to push the sales back up again.

Friends and colleagues have started to ask me about the ‘second wave of COVID-19’ again. I’m getting dragged into all sorts of discussions that I don’t really feel comfortable being a part of, but I am trying my best to be helpful to others while also looking after myself.

Day One Hundred and Thirty-Six – Wednesday 29th July

I have found recently, that a few people I know have trapped themselves in a paranoid bubble of worry and anxiety over the coming second wave of COVID. It’s a difficult mindset to tackle because there is only so much advice you can offer, and I have found that these people are drawn to the negative more than the positive. It is difficult to deal with someone who has slipped into such a paranoia that facts do not penetrate the bubble they’ve made.

It’s also a slippery slope because apart from being averse to help, they’re also stuck in a self-absorbing state and don’t realise that others around them might be struggling or might be downing for other reasons. I have always tried to help those around me when they are struggling but I’ve found it really had the last two weeks because I myself haven’t been in a good state of mind and then I’ve had people pouring out their issues on top of me.

A classic example is someone asking how you are but not actually listening to your response of ‘not so well, I’m dealing with a lot of anxiety and stress’ but getting from them the answer: ‘I’m so stressed, I’m having a hard time, I feel really worried over this COVID 2nd wave, I don’t know what to do.’

It’s a self-centred conversation with the person fixated on ‘I’ and how the current state of the world affects them. It’s also a lack of seeing the bigger picture. I can’t tell you how many times over the last two weeks I’ve given the same answer about dealing with anxiety and stress and not doing so well, only to have people ignore me or not want to ask why I’m suffering.

It may sound like a strange concept because I think people generally don’t want to ask those questions that may prompt the talk of mental health. But at the same time, the people asking these questions are people I work with or friends and both groups know me inside and out. So, to have them suddenly so self-absorbed is surreal and noticeable.

Again, it’s all about finding a balance. How much can I help those around me without putting myself on the line. At the end of the day, it isn’t my job to help everyone and I have to recognise that putting my own health and mental health first is the right thing to do.

Day One Hundred and Thirty-Seven – Thursday 30th July

It’s hotting up again, it seems that it is no longer jumper weather anymore! As you may or may not know, I prefer Winter where I can wrap up warm and be snuggly. I don’t enjoy the hot muggy British weather. I can deal with hot weather abroad but not in the UK.

Today was a good day, for many reasons but I don’t want to discuss them while they still might not come to pass. Watch this space!

I was in the office again this afternoon. SO MUCH POST TO FRANK. Haha, end of the month brings so much post and it takes ages to frank, even though I have a new faster franking machine at the office. There was also an issue where I had to phone the franking company because the machine wasn’t working. Luckily, they managed to sort it over the phone, and I was able to frank over 100 envelopes.

It’s always very hot in the office when the weather is warm because the building is made of wood. I opened all windows in my office and lowered the blackout blind down, it did make a difference. I felt like I was living in my own little cave. I read more of my factual Cleopatra book while I was franking everything. I’ve now read 5 chapters and I am enjoying it, but I was right to read it in sections. I wouldn’t have been able to process the information otherwise.

I’m still on my obsessive Hamilton soundtrack journey. Not only is the music good but it is a great tool to wake you up of keep you positive. I always try to listen to upbeat music that makes me feel energised or positive while I’m working. It’s no use listening to Ballads at work, they just make me feel sleepy.

My bedroom started to feel a little like a sauna in the evening. It was so hot. I played State of Decay 2 on my Xbox until the heat got to the point where my headache was pulsating to an abnormal beat. I think it might be quite hard to get to sleep tonight.

Day One Hundred and Thirty-Eight – Friday 31st July

Gah! It has become so HOT in the UK again! I’m dying in this heat. The curtains are closed, the window is open, and my clothes are already sticking to me. Having to work with my laptop on a tray on my lap is not ideal at all!

I overslept this morning. My Mum had to wake me up. I don’t know what I was dreaming about, but it was enough to keep me soundly asleep. I got to sleep very late last night due to the heat, so I think I was probably just overtired. I’m still making the same mistake of thinking that Thursday is Friday because I’m in the office, and I think internally, my mind believes Friday to be Saturday. I only say this because I seem to always oversleep on a Friday morning. Not massively oversleep, just making myself late by like 10-15minutes.

It’s the last day of July and honestly, I’m glad to see this month come to an end because it was filled with SUCH anxiety and stress and I had to deal with a lot of painful migraines. I did, however, manage to read 9 books in July, which, considering everything that was going on, I see as a small accomplishment.

This month was dominated with reading children’s books. I ended up only reading 3 thriller books. It was quite nice having the change of pace and stepping away from thrillers for a small while.

I’ll be cooking again on the weekend and am trying yet another cake recipe, which, I hope will go down well. I’m basically trying all the pinned recipes I have on Pinterest and stockpiling the ones I’ll be able to cook for myself when I eventually move into my own place – which will hopefully be soon!

I’m going to try and do some more fluid painting on Saturday, as the weather is going to be so hot.

I am yet again avoiding all news channels regarding COVID and I’m trying not to get sucked into helping friends and colleagues through COVID second wave worries. There is only so much I can say and getting pushed back into someone else’s paranoia isn’t a place I want to put myself in. I don’t mind offering advice but there has to be a level between helping someone and taking care of myself.

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