A new perspective on self-isolation

I am so lucky right now.  My whole family is well and healthy (in the various countries we live in around the world).  I have a beautiful home in which to self-isolate.  My husband is working (from home) so I don’t need to (as far as money is concerned).  The sun is always shining which, when we’re spending so much time at home, is a real blessing as we can make the most of our lovely garden and pool.  Finally, in comparison to some places, there are many people in Bali who are also still well and, with the precautions most people are taking, it will hopefully stay that way.

However, I’ve recently been beating myself up for not putting in enough time at work.  I’ve literally done nothing and feel so unmotivated.   It’s left me feeling really disappointed in myself.  At the same time though, there was something niggling me deep down, wondering if I should really be working at this time anyway?!?

With schools closed and the mental impact of everything happening in the world right now, this is going to be a particularly arduous time for the whole family.  Not only am I trying to entertain the children and have fun, I’m also trying to make sure they are engaging in educational and sporting activities, as well as contributing to chores around the house and having some alone time to play and make up their own games together…… not to mention keeping my own sanity intact!

I found myself trying to answer questions such as:

  • What might happen if I don’t make changes regarding the way I’m feeling?
  • With things as they currently stand, what am I really looking/hoping for?
  • Exactly why am I so disappointed in myself?
  • What am I doing well?
  • What’s most important to me right now?
  • What can we gain from not making any changes at all?

As I sat staring out of my bedroom window pondering these answers, I noticed how bright and green the rice fields are and how brilliant the volcanos are beyond.  The fields looked so lush and full of life; the volcanoes were reaching up high in the sky, dramatic and bold.  The planet is eerily quiet, yet recovering and beginning to flourish once again.   What a truly rare time we are living in.

Never, in my entire life, had the whole world shut down and provided us with such a unique opportunity to bond with our families and give our planet the chance to heal.  We’re seeing stories all over social media of dolphins returning to waters where there is now no boat traffic, the canals of Venice being clear enough to see fish swimming at the bottom and air pollution being reduced significantly. 

When I’m in the current position I find myself, why would I want to do anything other than surrender to it and focus on my family?  I’ve got a minimum of two weeks to spend entirely focused on my children, my family as a whole and my own personal growth.  I often feel guilty for not doing enough (even though I try my hardest to find a balance) but, as a child, I only ever wanted to be a Mum, so that’s always my main priority. 

Now, we’re all being given a chance to live slowly.  We’re being given time to teach our children about being grateful, to encourage them to help out around the house and explain why it’s important.  To be patient with one another, to eat healthily and heal from the inside out.  To talk to our children about world problems and what we can do to help.  To encourage them to be considerate and thoughtful not just to each other, but to the community and others less fortunate than themselves. 

I am only realizing now just how fast-paced life is.  We barely have time to consider what we’re doing on any given day, let alone slowing down enough to discuss challenges with our children or contemplate our own internal difficulties.  We don’t sit still long enough for our feelings and emotions to come to the surface.  Our ideas are overrun with thoughts of failure and negativity because we don’t give ourselves time to bring those ideas to fruition, before we’re busy contemplating our next errand or social engagement; before we’re distracted with something else.  We are plagued with self-doubt and fears about our future because we don’t have time to foresee a solution! 

During these first 5 days of self-isolation, I’ve seen my children expressing their ideas, their fears, and their creativity and having a chance to discuss them and build on them. 

I’ve slowed down enough to finally see and hear everything they want me to.

For many years, we have all visualized a healing planet.  A time when we give Earth a chance to rejuvenate.   We have all wished to slow down, be more self-aware and grow into the best version of ourselves we can possibly be.  To be great role models for our children and support them as they grow into kind, resilient, independent, hard-working and happy adults.  This is our chance.  This has never happened before and, for the sake of all the sick and suffering right now, let’s hope it never happens again.  I pray daily for all the sick, lonely, unemployed and anxious people in the world right now.  You are not alone.  For once, the entire human race is united.  Our troubles during this ordeal may present themselves differently for each and every one of us, but have no doubt that we are all in a state of worry and uncertainty.

If you’re lucky enough to be healthy, at home with your family and self-isolating in a bid to prevent this horrible virus from spreading and harming more people, use your time wisely. 

The planet is healing, so should we.