Well, what can I say? 40 days on and Spain are still in isolation. In the past 5 weeks, we have been confined to our home. Surprisingly we are doing well, and somehow this whole situation is becoming the new normal and we are getting used to it. 

Spain has one of the most stringent lockdown rules in Europe and for 5 weeks we have been indoors, with only shopping days to ‘look forward to’. Valencia, like many other cities in Spain, is built with apartments and large outdoor spaces. But with lockdown as strict as it is, the children can’t even enjoy a trip to the park.

But that’s soon to change on the 27th of April when children will be allowed to go out after 5 weeks of confinement. Of course, there will be rules. This only applies to children up to 12 years old. They can go out for a limited time and they also need to be accompanied by an adult. It’s a chance that many parents welcome, at last, it seems like things very slowly getting back to normal. 

Day 40

We keep ourselves updated with the news in the UK (where all our families are) and it’s been a scary time. We worry about them and the thought that if something might happen we can’t do anything about it.  But so far everyone that we know are following the lockdown rules and no-one has been affected. 

Some days, I find myself overthinking the whole situation. How long it will last? How will this affect our jobs? I worry about how this is affecting the mental health of people I am close with. But, as I cannot do anything to change this situation, I  try to focus on the here and now. 

A few of my friends are struggling. Sometimes it’s hard to find the ‘right words’ to make them feel better. But I have to remind myself that everyone must be having the same anxieties and bad days. I tell them about my worries too, that I too have shitty days. We are all on the same boat and just listening and having a good old moan can do wonders. 

Life In Isolation

We have been getting up at around 7:30, though there have been some days we have been waking up later than usual.  My 12-year-old son is surprisingly doing well. After a week of an unorganised mess, we finally had a routine going.

The school have set tasks and organised video calls for classes online. I have also created a ‘daily schedule’ as a reminder of what he has to do. The idea came when I saw a quarantine plan for the kids. It’s basically a list of things that kids can do so it helps with routine. There had been a few times when he’s ‘forgotten’ but at least the list is there to remind him. 

isolation daily schedule
Lockdown daily schedule

Once my husband locks himself in the office to work. I check on friends and family back home. Technology has been a godsend, imagine not having the internet/FaceTime or text? This situation would be so much harder. I miss faces, and I swear I’m starting to forget what people look like. I get excited when the postman comes around. Oh, how life has changed in just over a month…

My New Shopping Anxiety

Nothing much has changed in the past 40 days. Shopping days are limited, and so far we have only been to the shops five times since lockdown began. Going to the shops have been adding to my list of anxieties. It really stresses me out. From making sure we have gloves and masks on, freaking out when people come too close, washing hands, to wiping down my entire shopping contents when I get home.  

People’s morale also has been zapped by this whole situation. The normal weekly trip to the supermarket has become a strict supply run. No interactions, the mood is sombre, it’s not the usual atmosphere that we are used to. 

 

Cooking For Distration

During this past four weeks of isolation, I have been cooking a lot more than usual.  Retro cakes have been my thing lately and have been enjoying re-creating dishes like ‘KFC style chicken‘ and sweet and sour to keep the boys happy. I’ve always liked cooking and doing this while in isolation has been a good way to keep myself occupied.  The problem with this is, that after our lockdown is lifted we are probably going to need to spend extra time trying losing the weight. 😩

Making The Most Of Entertainment Subscriptions

Funnily enough, a few weeks before this whole thing started. I was telling my husband how great it would be to have the leisure to watch all the TV series that I’ve been wanting to watch but never get the time. Well, be careful what you wish for! I didn’t mean it quite this way, I was thinking more if when we retired or something non-pandemic like that… 

Thankful For The Garden

Having a garden is a blessing, though sunny days are scarce in the past few weeks as if the virus has also affected the weather. It’s amazing how sunny days can make a difference in peoples mood. Yesterday I spotted this bee carrying his load of pollen. How cute is that? It certainly lifted up my mood at least. 

Final Thoughts

Forty days is a long time to be isolated from our friends and society in general, and surprisingly it seems to have flown by. Some days are harder than others, but keeping positive and talking to friends and family certainly helps. Though it’s unsure when life in Spain will get back to ‘normal’ for now we are just trying to make the best of the situation until that time comes.
 
How are you coping with isolation? What things do you do to keep sane? What would be the first thing you would do when you are finally allowed out? Let me know in the comments below. 
 
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British/Filipina now living in Valencia, Spain. Mum, wife, designer and illustrator. I am also the author of Ohla Living where I share my lifestyle, travel, recipes and creative ideas.

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