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Experiences of 2020

Gillian

The lockdown experience has not been the same for everyone. We’ve not all had equal experiences. Give yourself permission to not compare yourself to others, and to do, think, feel what is right for you.

I have been fortunate to have been working throughout lockdown. I’m privileged not to be furloughed; grateful for all that affords me: financial stability, routine, able to leave the house, socially distanced interactions with colleagues. I’ve been concerned about the health of my family. It’s been challenging to know what to do for the best. Conflicted as I questioned if I should be at work and what was the impact on my family.

I’m grateful to have been able to shop for my household as well as my parents and elderly in-laws, and to have that check in with them, even if only through the window when I deliver their shopping. I’m full of gratitude for those caring for others who do not have family to shop for them, collect prescriptions, check in on them.

I’m full of admiration for the organisations, charities and agencies aligning to support our community. We live in an amazing place!

I am concerned about the women in my life; we all have very different experiences, and that’s OK in the middle of a pandemic. It’s been a balance for us all; working from home, furloughed, redundant, home schooling, keyworkers, caring for elders, volunteers. No one has had an easy time.

My concerns for women are health related: women’s health services paused at this time, understanding that this has to be. I am, however, full of concern for cervical tests / mammograms / menopause treatment and the longer-term impact for women’s health. I’m concerned at the number of businesses that cannot operate, that are predominantly run and staffed by women and I’m worried about their future.

There are challenges of being a woman in lockdown; being present at work, physically and mentally; deadlines, new tasks, new COVID19 related tasks, and your own workload to still balance; and the challenges of working from home vs. physically being at work. Shopping. Cooking. Separated from family. And every day we show up, get it all done, because we need to. Oh the guilt! That I am safe and well (physically) vs. wanting to volunteer in my community but I just don’t have time. Feeling selfish for putting my loved ones first. Guilt, when it’s been overwhelming, working full time, spending your days off planning, then queuing for shopping for three households.

My overall experience is one of gratitude - thankful for the amazing Inverclyde community I live in. Seeing the practical way our community has supported one another #InverclydeCares.

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