I have been in self-isolation for the past week and I am on the verge of returning to work after this 7 day period at home. I have been ok physically but, as the coronavirus outbreak is worsening I am really starting to struggle with my mental health.
Last year I was absent from work with stress, anxiety and depression for nearly 6 months and up until a few days ago I felt pretty stable but now I am starting to struggle, especially with the anxiety side of my mental health.
I went shopping, as I usually do on payday and I normally buy much that I need for the month ahead. In the days leading up to going shopping, I was hearing stories of the shops selling out of essentials that I normally buy monthly which started my anxiety levels to rise.
I get paid monthly, I live on my own, I have bills to pay and my monthly salary just about covers that along with food and other things I might need. I have very little room monthly to save any money and budgeting for food is one way that I can keep in some kind of control of my finances. When I went shopping (and I visited 3 different supermarkets), not one had items that I rely on for my monthly food shop. I eat a lot of pasta, at least 3 times a week as I know that what I cook will do me for 3 meals (one that evening, then lunch with the leftovers for tea), there were no tins of baked beans that I eat on toast at least 2 times a week, there was no veg, the freezers were empty save for a few tubs of ice-cream. There were no toilet rolls or dog food, laundry products, hand wash, bath products or bin bags. This has caused me a lot of worry and expense. I need to eat, my dog needs to eat and I have a budget that I really can’t go too far away from.
In the end, I was forced to buy dog food and pasta on-line (Amazon had some stocks available) but I paid over the odds. Roxy usually has one type of food and I couldn’t get that so instead of spending the usual £9 on a bag I had to buy something that was similar in nutritional value and ingredients that cost twice as much. And I have had to bulk buy pasta online spending a lot more than I usually do.
In addition to that, I am getting really anxious about how this virus will affect those around me, both my Mum and Dad are in the at-risk group and are retired and I am worried about their health and how they will manage in having to isolate themselves with things like food shopping and just remaining safe. My brother is also in self-isolation for the foreseeable future as he is asthmatic.
I have been watching the news, not constantly but the important parts of it as the advice the government are giving seems to change on a daily, if not hourly, basis. I don’t know whether watching it is making my anxiety worse or not but I do know that I would rather be armed with the facts and be up to date with advice that is being given.
I’m worried about going back to work, and I can’t help panicking about what would happen if I picked up the virus and carried it to my parents or transferred it to someone else and I am worried about how the virus could affect me.
I’m worried about what will happen with work and if the office will remain open and about working from home. I was planning on getting broadband put into my home this month but can no longer afford to do so as my food bill was more than I had planned. Not having broadband and having to rely on mobile internet might be ok for blogging and other general browsing but I don’t have enough data to work from home for 7.5 hours a day for 5 days let alone afford to do this indefinitely. I don’t even know if working from home would be an option when the work I do means that I have access to personal data.
And I am worried about having an extended period of time away from work, whether I will still get paid, whether I will still have a job to go back to should I take leave and whether, if I have to have time off again due to my mental health (which was stable before this virus pandemic) whether it will go down as sick leave and how that will affect my sickness record and pay.
I am just really anxious and worried about everything at the moment and I’m struggling to see anything in a positive light with so few answers to any questions, the advice we are being given changing constantly and all these stupid people who are panic buying and making the situation even worse in the grand scheme of things.
14 thoughts on “Coronavirus, Anxiety and Me”
Hey Good morning Suzi,
I know these are trying times, l also know that with the spectrum there are times when we can make things worse for us mentally due to literalmness and seeing further than we want to.
Try and keep yourself calm, currently the country needed the lockdown, whatever the politics you hold – this country should have done this earlier, but it’s here and now we need to make it work for us. The biggest problem was yes panic buying and selfishness of people – but the infrastructures were not in place [from anyone] so in the next 2-3 weeks most retailers should be able to restock, with the new administrations in place, this will stop panic buying in the physical sense of the word [as in buying from retailers] and slowly normality will return to the integrity of stores and the people.
Having a pet is bad at this time because of the fact we can’t always get hold of their dietary requirements, will Roxy eat pasta as well? Scrappy used to love it mixed with her biscuits.
We recently bought pasta from a company called Latino Gourmet as we too due to eating disorders eat a lot of pasta – so yes slightly more expensive but not horribly so and will post out – these may help during the interim periods.
As to worrying about your parents – call them everyday – don’t just rely upon texts, now physically call people – re-open that line of communication and let them hear your voice, don’t visit them if you don’t have to.
As to the anxiety, deep breaths, l like to joke and simply say ‘deep breasts’ yeah, probably not going to work for you, but pick a thought to just cheer you up.
If you need to rant, moan, groan, vent or whatever – email me 🙂
Thank you so much Rory. It’s been really hard and I think that the uncertain ness hasn’t helped much especially as I can’t plan everything like I used to! Roxy loves pasta and I’ve managed to buy some online which I’m waiting on to be delivered. The food I ordered for Roxy came the other day so she should be ok for a bit.
Today has been better, I’ve stayed away from the news as much as possible and have spent some time cleaning my bathroom. I also had an idea for a project that I’ve written about for tomorrow’s blog post which I’m excited about!
Thanks for being there for me, I’ll email you soon! Hope you, Scrappy and Suze stay safe! Lots of love to you all xxxx
Always a pleasure and never a problem 🙂
Hello Suzi, I know these are the craziest times, scarier as it keeps getting. We all are relying on sources like the internet and Whatsapp. We are living in a community of people wherein we have isolated ourselves but are virtually connected via zoom, video. We even chant together, talk to each other and encourage each other. we are only being very paranoid, just try to chant, Send in positivity to the universe, say affirmations. Yes, I can do it, yes! And surely the universe has something great planned for you. You can chant that your boss helps you get an internet connection or some external help, try to ask for more wisdom. You are alive for a purpose! It’s a mission for you to stay active, mentally and physically fit! You will surely win.!
Thank you so much for taking time to comment and share this! It sounds like a good thing to try! I’m feeling a bit better today and have plans in place for a project which I’m writing bout for my post tomorrow! Stay safe xxx
Thanks for candidly sharing your struggles, worries and anxieties. So many of us can relate to what you are going through. I like what aguycalledbloke commented and I am currently staying away from the TV news as much as possible and focusing on crafting projects and what I can control in my world. I’ve been eating healthy as I can and getting lots of exercise (we are still allowed to walk about outside as long as we keep 6 feet from each other and walking around outside is all there is to do outside the house as everything except essentials is closed). Hang in there!
I’ve spent a lot of my day cleaning and occupying myself which has helped loads and I have a project that I’m working on which I’m writing about for my post tomorrow which I’m looking forward to starting and seeing where it goes xxxx
it’s an understandable response. We will get through this; it will pass. Sounds like you’re getting some good coping strategies in place. It’s worrying with elderly parents, thank heavens we have ways to keep in touch.
It is. I’m starting to feel a bit better today, I spent much of my day doing housework and made a list of things I’d like to get done now I have lots of “free time”. I’ve written a post about a project I’m starting that is going live tomorrow on the blog and think this will give me something to focus on! Xxxx
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Thank you xxx
So long since I saw you around the blog, I thought I would check in and make sure your were okay.
Just so you know you are never forgotten, Suzi. 🙂
Best wishes, Pete.
Thank you! I’ve been ok, it’s been hard blogging and being in a routine since the start of coronavirus but I’ve got an update scheduled for tomorrow! It’s been ages! Have missed you and blogging! Xxx