As we approach the end of yet another month in lockdown, albeit partial now, I am beginning to wonder when to end this lockdown blog. Afterall, this was meant to be about editing, proofreading and writing!
When we entered lockdown, we did so suddenly, immediately. We went to bed one night, knowing that the next day everything would be different. As days turned into weeks and weeks turned into months, we got used to it.
We got used queuing to get into the supermarkets. We got used to watching bad connections on TV programmes. We got used to not seeing our friends and families in the ways we used to. We got used to daily updates from Downing Street.
We complied, mostly, with the new regime. We followed the rules and kept our distance. We felt guilty about going outside, having to justify our every move.
Now, we find ourselves in a state in between lockdown and open. Slowly, sector by sector, the world is opening up. We already have garden centres opening. Tomorrow, car showrooms and open-air markets will begin trading again. Some schools will open for more children and then, in a few weeks, some more “non-essential” shops will open for business.
We will get used to an everchanging normality. Sometimes open, sometimes locked down.
There will be inquiries, inquests, scrutiny and constant monitoring. There will be memorials, many memorials as many people have succumbed to the horrid effects of Covid-19. There will be lessons to be learnt. And not just for politicians and healthcare leaders. For all of us. Let’s hope that this has taught us how to be a singular human race. As a viral pandemic tore through boarders, we have learnt there’s more that brings us together than separates us, even if we are physically separated.
Unlike the moment we arrived in lockdown, there will be no grand reopening. No one, significant moment of unlock.
Therefore, I have taken the decision to stop these daily updates. Instead, I will be using this space to talk about what I had intended to: writing, editing and proofreading. It has been a record of time within a strict lockdown, a period that I hope I never have to experience again.
Daily writing has been a useful exercise. It’s given me a discipline in these uncertain times, when routine was essential but difficult to find. I would recommend setting time aside daily to write, whether you are a writer or not: it’s incredibly soothing and a great way to keep your mind healthy. I can see why it is used in mental health treatments.
I look forward to returning to a complete normal but know that may be some way off. For now, I will say goodbye to a daily lockdown blog. Thank you for reading and for being part of this record of history.
We will meet again. We will be together again.
Nick (he/him) is an editor and proofreader, specialising in LGBTQ+ writing. He is an Intermediate Member of the Chartered Institute of Editing and Proofreading and a member of PEN, the Professional Editors Network.
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