Dorothy in lockdown

Well, I suppose both she and me are in a sort of lockup/lockdown. And as much as we don’t like it, it does seem to be keeping most of us safe. I miss seeing Dorothy, and I am happy enough “in my own skin” so to speak. At least I can get out and go walking; but I do feel for those who are in lockdown, alone and not able, through sickness, disability, or infirmness to get ‘out and about’.

I am impressed at the rigidity of the visiting rules where Dorothy is living in care but, at the same time, dismayed by the same rules that forbid my otherwise regular visits. I know it’s for the best, and the strategy has been successful in keeping her care home free from the coronavirus. Even in ‘normal’ times there are staff dedicated to providing a vast range of activities and I am grateful for the innovative and clever diversions they constantly arrange to ensure a good degree of residents’ interaction, a task I would find difficult if she were at home these days!

When you have a partner living away from you there is always a nagging doubt about the level and nature of her care; the constant fear that her health may not be good or is compromised in an institutional environment, or that she may be fretting or unhappy at the separation. I have none of those concerns about Dorothy, her care is first rate, and it is me that is fretting! Even after nearly two years, I miss her being at my side. But I know she is ‘happy in the moment’; I know she doesn’t miss me, and that is actually hard for me to accept. If you, my reader, happen to be in that separated role, you will know how it can be so depressive and how it affects every aspect of your life. Perhaps, like me, you find it hard to sleep, are not motivated to be social (even if we could, outside of coronavirus), how everything is a chore – to be procrastinated whenever possible.

I am so grateful for these longer sunny days; this fine weather is at least an encouragement to get out and about because, as you probably well know, it’s even hard to get out of bed some days, or to plan ahead for the day. I’m not with Dorothy in the early morning to see how she starts her day, but most times when I visit, she is up and dressed with a ready, welcoming smile. It’s the absence of that sort of greeting that saddens me, and I can’t wait to be able to resume more frequent visits.

Absence makes the heart grow fonder it is said, and it’s true. However, I have discovered that when you are already at the most extreme fondest point, then the absence makes the heart grow sadder! This enforced time apart must also have a positive side – which I am forever striving to find – and that requires me to accept the need to re-discover and develop my interest in reading, in writing (like this!), in my electronics hobby and to also ensure some physical activities, like walking, to keep my old bones and muscles from atrophying! My lovely children keep in touch which is a great blessing and an encouragement for me to not drop the ball! My heart goes out to others like me but who don’t have that family connection. I’d love to hear from you and share your lockdown thoughts…..