Reaching Breaking Point

plate of crunchy cookie and cup of coffee placed near armchair in living room

Ah Sunday, another day of nothingness. Shall we have a little chat?

I’ll be honest here. I’m struggling. Remember almost a year ago when I wrote about how we were two weeks into a lockdown that was due to last three weeks? Little did I think 10 months later I would be sitting crying tears of frustration at lockdown being extended yet again. So I think it’s time we have a little chat.

We’re all fed up. Well, those of us in the UK are. If you’re that lucky person sitting in Australia planning your night out, please know that I am jealous. It was announced on Tuesday that Scotland were going to start letting the early school years go back to the classroom, but everyone else is stuck with the same rules until the beginning of March. Then on Thursday, the Northern Ireland stood up and announced early years would start back to school 8th March, with lockdown continuing for everyone else until 1st April at the earliest. They then went on to say things like “don’t make plans for Easter”, quoting that the young children are having their mental health damaged by not being in school. It was said time and again that the R number is between 0.6 and 0.8, but that the earliest they will lift anything else will be after Easter as they want to avoid big gatherings.

Now. For those of us that have followed the rules to the best of our ability, this is a slap in the face. Unfortunately the numbers are still high. And it’s for that reason that I agree, there do still need to be restrictions in place. However. We were told on 17th December that this lockdown would be in place from Boxing Day until the R number was below 1 for a sustained amount of time. It has also been proven that children in school here in the UK drives up the number of cases. Businesses are collapsing. People are at breaking point. And now we’re being told we’re probably going to be in this position for another 2 months. I’m not sure how much longer I can cope.

I don’t necessarily want out to a pub. Or overly care about getting a hair cut. Plus, we all know I’m not one for going out partying or in large crowds. However I do want the choice to do these things. I don’t want a government standing behind podiums telling me that we as the general public aren’t doing enough. Because while I know there are pockets breaking the rules, the majority of us have been following them. The way things stand here in Northern Ireland, pubs that don’t serve food have been open for a total of 3 weeks since 20th March 2020. Many of them actually closed their doors earlier than that because social distancing was advised and they couldn’t facilitate it. With this last announcement, Lockdown 3 (or is it Lockdown 4 for us in Northern Ireland?) will last a minimum of 14 weeks with no relaxation of the rules. That’s longer than the first lockdown back last year!

It’s becoming harder and harder to focus on those silver linings of lockdowns. I’m no longer saving money because instead we’re buying takeaways and alcohol to treat ourselves more often. It’s the middle of winter, so we can’t spend a lot of time outside. Brexit means there are food shortages in shops, or use by dates are ridiculously close, so you go food shopping and come home more annoyed about life than before you left. TV is more or less rubbish, streaming services are hiking their prices up, and I want to see someone that is not related to me or one of my bosses – sorry folks but it’s true.

Living at home during the pandemic has been a blessing. I genuinely would not have been able to survive financially if I were living on my own. I’d probably have felt even more isolated, and not sure I would’ve coped much better. However everyone is feeling lockdown fatigue now. So if one person in the house is in a bad mood, everyone ends up in a bad mood. Little things, even down to having a bath without worrying someone else wants into the bathroom, lift us up or send us spiralling.

I’m also annoyed at myself. In 2019, I spent the money to take my parents and my sister on holiday. We had an absolute blast when we were away. But it meant I chose not to spend money on seeing my friends in Glasgow. Fear not, said I, I will travel in 2020 and see more of my friends! But of course that didn’t happen. Meaning the last time I saw some of my uni friends face-to-face was October 2018. And it’s a stupid thing to be annoyed about, because a lot of people have it worse. But I miss seeing people my own age. I miss getting in the car and just driving for the sake of driving. I miss being by the sea, or taking a walk around a clothes shop with no intention of buying anything. I miss being in work 5 days a week and feeling that wave of exhaustion hit on a Friday at 4:10pm when I got home and relaxed. Having meals that someone else has cooked for you, served you, and cleaned up after. A pint that has come through the pipes to give it that perfect head, helping down the ridiculously overpriced crisps. Planes going overhead and wondering where they’re going.

My sincere apologies for being so negative today. It’s probably not what you wanted to read on a Sunday morning, nor is it any help to you. But one thing I have always been clear about is this is Life With Ktkinnes. Me. And pretending that everything’s hunky-dory when it’s not just isn’t cutting it anymore. It’s exhausting pretending to be positive all the time. So instead I am going to take the time today to try and bring back that bit of hope. I’m going to make up a list of all the things I can’t wait to do when these lockdowns end or are reduced, and try to make loose plans. Hopefully we’ll reach the other side of this soon. But in the mean time, if you’re struggling – talk. Please don’t feel alone. And if you don’t feel comfortable talking to friends or family, there are many charities and organisations that can help you when you’re struggling. Don’t suffer alone. As I said a few years ago, even stars need darkness to shine, and a new day is coming soon.

10 thoughts on “Reaching Breaking Point

  1. Jaclynistic Vibes

    I’m sorry to hear you’re struggling and in a low place right now. It’s definitely a difficult time at the minute, because despite the vaccines we have no real idea when lockdown will be lifted and life can return to ‘normal’.

    The things I miss are seeing other people in person, being able to go for a meal or sit in a cafe and going to the cinema. Those simple little pleasures that I took for granted before. It’ll be a happy day when we can do that again x

  2. Ellie Phillips

    Always here if you need to talk! I agree I think everyones got to a point where its like “whats next” “when we will be out of this” and we have no answers! I had my 21st birthday last year in lockdown (1st april) and its 99.9% likely im gonna be in lockdown for my birthday this year, it sucks! I know theres bigger problems in the world than me not being able to go out for a meal or to the club for my birthday but those are the things that i cling onto for happiness and seeing friends and its so annoying! We’ll get there soon but i just hope the government do the right thing and make the right decisions!x

    Ellie // http://www.thediaryofellie.com

  3. Michelle

    I hear you. These are difficult times and it’s getting frustrating that there’s no end in sight.

    Here in my region of Ontario (Canada), students are back in school and they lifted our stay at home order but we’re still in the red zone which means a lot of restrictions.

    The day after they lifted the stay at home order, my daughter was annoyed because kids from her school were gathering and having parties, despite the fact that red zone restrictions don’t allow it. That’s my biggest frustration. We’re doing everything we can to abide by the rules, and we see others who just don’t care and do what they want.

    Hang in there. We will get through this. I just wish I knew when.

  4. T. B. C...

    Ohh Katie, these are depressing times indeed, and I feel your every word. Well, perhaps not the pint with the perfect head (I don’t drink) but I can appreciate the joy when drinking a freshly prepared cool drink, in a place that is full of the people you love and want to be with, engaging in fun, light or philosophical debates about…acting!!! Two of us at T.B.C are in a relationship, together. One of us is in Scotland and the other in Kent. IT. IS. HARD. I cannot remember the last time we met. It’s breaking us, not being able to just go get a fresh coffee from our favourite coffee shops and go for a long walk, together, or just sit in each others company, hugging. Going for walks around my home town is getting boring now, as I just keep doing the same route and I am dying for a bit of sea and sand – even if it is cold. But alas we can’t leave our own location. The other day, nothing had happened, I had plenty to do – scripts to prep for work – I was fine. And then in the split of a second, it all changed and my mood darkened. Everything was annoying me and I was dissatisfied and anxious. Yet nothing had happened. These are weird times, and I guess we are lucky to be able to use our blogs as an outlet to express ourselves and in a way, self counsel the mind and heart. All I can say, is look after yourself. Be kind to yourself. It is ok for us to feel this way.

    We now realise how important the creative world and diversity is. It allows us conversations that ignite the imagination, places outside of our locality give our eyes something else to feast on, food to eat and the vista just lifts the soul.

    Praying we can back to some kind of normality with connection and love at the centre of it life. Be safe and hoping your spirits lift soon. Love T.B.C… xxx

  5. voluptuouschatterbox

    Actually want to cry reading your post. I’m struggling so bad with everything right now. Like you, I wouldn’t be big into partying or really in desperate need to get a haircut but it’s the fact of if I did want to? I could, that I’d be able to go out shopping with my mum and not worry someones going to stop us because it’s “only 1 per household” I know there are bigger things to worry about than that and I feel selfish even saying I want the choice to shop but honestly… I do. It feels like there’s nothing for us to look forward to.

    I’m sorry for how you’re feeling and never apologise for what you write. It’s not negative, it’s how you feel.

    Kerry-Ann xx

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  7. Nic | Nic's Adventures & Bakes

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts on what we all have been going through this last year, I have been affected to with it all, I do think we need that time to process it all and relax after it all and focus on the future

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  9. Kate

    I’m so sorry to hear you’re having a rough time. I know these types of feelings are normally difficult to share so publicly so I think you’re incredibly brave for writing it down. I also relate a lot to what you wrote here. I just feel exhausted all the time. This time last year I was working a dream job and now I’m unemployed and not having much luck finding new work. It starts to feel like this endless cycle and every day looks the same. You apologised for being negative but sometimes you just have to be. I personally don’t think it’s helpful in anyway to always pretend like everything is butterflies and rainbows all the time. Sometimes we need to step back and acknowledge when we’re having a bad time, and those feelings are totally valid. You may not think it’s the kind of thing people want to read, but personally for me I take a tiny bit of comfort in knowing that I’m not alone in feeling this way (even though I obviously wish we were all happy and joyful and having the best time of our lives right now). Sending hugs <3

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