Emerging from lockdown - "a happy bubble entirely inside of my comfort zone"

The coronavirus crisis has robbed Jenny Bathurst of the chance to sit A levels. We have asked her to share her thoughts on the difficult times we are living through... Here is her latest contribution.

By Phil Hewitt
Saturday, 18th July 2020, 7:19 am
Jenny Bathurst
Jenny Bathurst

"If I have learnt one skill since March, it has been the ability to fill twenty-four hours in just my kitchen, bathroom and bedroom. Where before I grew restless at the prospect of spending a day without meeting a friend or going out with my parents, I have now mastered the art of dragging out a seemingly mundane activity for hours, even looking forward to lunch as it’s an opportunity to fill time by planning, preparing and eating. With no events or holidays to anticipate over the entirety of summer, my mentality has slowly begun to drift towards the mindset that I have lost nearly all drive and resolve. As a Christian I find my purpose in my faith, but my everyday motivation and drive is beginning to long for the future and for a time when I can pursue my goals, rather than now, where I’m sat just waiting and filling my time rather than grabbing at a million opportunities.

"I am sure that in recent times I have driven my family and friends crazy by the amount of time I spend talking about university and journalism. If I’m not scouring a newspaper for interesting articles I’m adding unpronounceable Swedish furniture items to my IKEA wish list, preparing myself for all of the new hurdles I will be facing. And perhaps this is why I am focussing so much more on this new academic year than I would have done had the world not been turned upside down by this pandemic. To put it bluntly, I have nothing much else to look forward to. The time I spend with friends and family is so precious to me and of course my stomach is still tied in knots at the prospect of moving away, albeit not particularly far. Although I realise I may turn up on my first day and panic, fearful to be in such a new and alien situation, part of me still wants to feel that panic. It has been months since I have been placed in an adrenaline filled situation; currently I live day to day in a happy bubble entirely inside of my comfort zone. Although globally society is in a period of complete uncertainty, personally I am in a constant state of steadiness, where I have no college work to challenge me or much of a routine at all.

"However, I am certain that my future self would read this article in frustration and envy, irritated that I used this time of rest longing for busyness and academia when I have spent over the last decade in education. I should be cherishing the time I spend reading and sitting in the garden and with those I love, because I know that soon enough I will be left with little time to do any of those things. While this may have been a particularly quiet period for me I am still learning to be comfortable in whatever situation I am placed in, understanding that optimism is often the best way to transform a difficult circumstance into a far more manageable one."

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