Finding a new ‘normal’

April 2020

We are all in the same position right now: self isolating. None of us know when we will be able to return to our ‘normal’ everyday life. However, I believe that our ‘everyday life’ is not going to be back for at least another month – some have even said between 12-18 months. That’s crazy. Therefore, we will have to learn to adapt, and create our own new ‘normal’.

This concept is hard, because so many of us don’t want to accept the fact that this is how we are going to live now, possibly for a long time (however long that is). I for one keep thinking that it’s the Easter holidays and that a week on Monday I’ll be back at school and life will return to normal. But that’s incorrect.

The UK lockdown is allegedly for 3 weeks, said to be re-evaluated on 23rd April (which is the Thursday of the first week of school- so school is definitely a no-no for at least the following week or two), and with high hopes, I think lockdown will be lifted, but to be honest, that’s doubtful. As much as I want school to come back, it is highly unlikely that I will finish my year 12. I’m just glad I’m in the year sandwiched between GCSEs and A Levels!

At the moment, my daily routine consists of an 8am workout, followed by showering, coffee and school work. Later on in the day, I workout again, have more coffee and do more school work, between which I flick through TikTok, Pinterest and Instagram. I’ve loved focussing on doing school work and exercise but now I have reached a point where I have slumped.

This routine really tires me out, which is weird to say as who should be tired during quarantine? Despite having literally nothing to do (I do school work that doesn’t exist; I print of past papers or do extra work), I still wake up super early and go to sleep not that late, at 12-1. Everybody else I know goes to bed at 3 or 4 then wakes up in the afternoon – the perfect routine for a teenager during this period of self isolation. I just can’t bring myself to do that because I love doing stuff and ticking off things on a to-do list. It’s who I am.

Despite this, every now and again I do force myself to wake up no earlier than half nine – which is a struggle for me! – and to stay in bed and watch Netflix, and leave my workout for later in the day. This allows my body to recover and relax, which is very important since recently my body has been screaming for me to have a day off from exercise, bearing in mind I have been doing more than 2 hours of high intensity workouts throughout the day for 3 weeks now, nearly 4, straight after a week of being bed-ridden with tonsillitis. Now my body has come to the point where I need a break, but I can’t do that. I love the feeling of exercising outside in this glorious April weather (which is due to last at least another week!). Why should I stop exercising, if it makes me happy?

I’ll leave you on this: no matter if, during quarantine right now, you are person A, like me, who has to get up early and do a day’s work with little jobs and do lots of exercise, or if you are person B who sloths around all day (which is amazing – I applaud those who can sit and watch TV all day!), you do you. During this weird and maybe even scary times, it is important to look after yourself and therefore do what makes you happy and do what you want to do, not what people say you should or what the media says you should do (like going for your one-time outdoor exercise a day) (but please do the chores your mum tells you to do!), do you.

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