Updated: Jan 26
With the (temporary) ending of lockdown restrictions in England, it’s time to think about why I personally felt happier in April 2020 than now.
Obviously, all the horrible and bad cases and stories aside, what were these little things that made me happy and gave me a sense of rooting again?
After the first shock, I found myself in a place of calmness. Staying home meant protecting the planet. I had already worked from home a lot, so that wasn’t a big change, but for so many people it was the first time not commuting and spending actual time with their families.
Having lived in London for 11 years, it was the first time I saw people sitting on the nearby heath, enjoying themselves during the day and children running in the streets playing. Suddenly there was life.
Ironically, dying meant living.
Nature has always been bigger than us: a scary but also grounding thought. Especially when you realise how much man made bullshit there is out there. When I saw pictures of less polluted skies or animals running in the streets it had something really magical to it. The environment felt more balanced, and I myself more part of the nature again.
People took their time to cook or walk and via Zoom, I saw my continental European friends and family so much more than in a regular year. Crises open up new opportunities and perspectives.
For Easter, I bought toys from a local store in Austria who delivered it to my niece and nephew and I ordered a “Osterlamm” in London from a local German bakery. Never thought of that before! The feeling of supporting local businesses felt very satisfying and once more I felt grounded.
For me, it was a time of appreciation, humbleness but also togetherness.
For the first time living in London, I haven’t felt a feeling of competition, insignificance or consumerism.
We had so many Firsts (more on that, see last blog): we experienced the upbringing of Egyptian goslings, watched National Theatre’s Frankenstein on YouTube-both versions-or camped in our living room.
Especially in the beginning, where no one seemed to have answers, I felt that society moved closer together. We broke down into our purest self. No matter the difference, we became human and I think that is what I’m already starting to miss.
FOMO is coming back so are “musts”, “shoulds”, masses and traffic. While I’m relieved the disease is not as dramatic as it used to be last year, I know that I’m not the only one seeing the importance of keeping some of the good things that make us human, away from consumerism and insane working hours: at the end of the game, the King and the Pawn go back in the same box. It’s always good to remember: we are flying at high speed on that big lump through the universe - let’s try to keep up the magic in our lives.