In my fifty odd years of life, I’ve seen some stuff. From the Global Financial Crisis, to recessions, to SARS, AIDS, 9/11 and numerous other crises, we have rolled with the punches and I thought I’d seen the scariest things, the worst of humanity.
I was wrong. With the current COVID 19 pandemic, I’ve seen the worst of humanity come to the fore. Stores are struggling to keep up with demand as our basic needs are swept up in a rush of panic buying and people physically fighting one another to buy a roll of toilet paper. Selfishness has overtaken many – and I’ve seen an ugly side of humanity. I suspect it will get worse before it gets better, but I’ve found a bright side I hadn’t expected.
Writing is giving me a respite from the craziness, the fearmongering, the anxiety I’m struggling to cope with. My battle with Bipolar Disorder, severe anxiety, OCD and panic attacks is well known, and the situation in the world currently is setting off a whole lot of triggers, which are proving detrimental to my mental health. My GP has already recommended I stop watching the news and I’ve taken her advice – although that doesn’t mean I’ve buried my head in the sand regarding COVID 19. What it does mean is that I’m drip-feeding myself with news reports, as and when I can cope with them. And in the meantime, as I’ve mentioned, I’m writing, editing, planning – and I think that is the thing that will get me through these trying times.
In fact, I suspect that in many ways, being a writer is heaven-sent because it gives me an outlet. And that makes me a very lucky girl because I have somewhere to be, somewhere to hide out. The worlds I create in my head are a balm to a scary bloody world that quite frankly, I don’t really like much right at the minute.
Stay safe out there, and remember – be kind to your fellow humans.