What comes next?

This week marks the end of the second period of lockdown. Which just means it will all be reviewed at the end of this week, to see whether or not lockdown carries on. Last week Boris announced we had passed the peak of the virus so there is talk in the media about restrictions being lifted, though which restrictions and how they will be lifted is less clear yet.

There is a lot of talk about schools reopening, and a lot of extremely varying opinions about whether they should reopen and if they do, in what way. Should they be staggered? Can schools operate social distancing? Is it safe?

‘Safe’ is a word I’m really struggling with at the moment. Everyone keeps saying they want to feel safe before they send their kids to school or before they go on holiday or see people. Make sure it is ‘safe’ but I just don’t see how you can ever make anything ‘safe’.

I’m all for minimising risk as much as possible but you will never be completely safe from this virus. It’s a virus! And there is so much fear that getting the virus equals death despite the fact there is huge evidence that for most people it causes a mild illness and the truth is that many people may have already had it without even realising. Some people have it with no symptoms at all. I may have had it, you may have had it and never even known!

There’s so much evidence to suggest children are not badly affected by the virus and the WHO are even saying that they have found no evidence of children spreading the virus to adults. This seems baffling to me but apparently something to do with the way children’s bodies deal with the virus means they aren’t spreading it?

There are theories flying everywhere about why some people are affected by the virus worse than others. People with less vitamin D are affected worse which is why the older generations deal with it worse. It depends on the viral load, the amount of the virus you were infected with at once. So so so many theories.

Businesses want to get back to work and are introducing various measures to make sure people can maintain a 2m distance and can sanitise everything.

Some people say who cares about businesses and the economy, people’s lives are more important so we should keep lockdown. I disagree with that because having a shit economy will mean more poverty and hunger and will kill different people.

The lockdown has no doubt prevented a lot of coronavirus related deaths… But it has also killed people. People have died from suicide, from not being able to cope with the lockdown. Domestic abuse has massively increased. People have died of heart attacks and strokes and even appendicitis because they haven’t wanted to burden the NHS and have waited to long to call for medical help. Thousands of people who would have been referred for cancer treatment have not been referred because so much of the NHS has been shut down ‘in case’ the NHS was overrun. My friend’s dad is incredibly ill and has struggled to get any medical professional to take any notice of him because he doesn’t have coronavirus. They fobbed him off with antibiotics. He may not survive.

Thankfully some aspects of the NHS are being reopened but there will be long term affects we are yet to see for people referred for cancer treatment later than they would have been. Receiving treatment later than they would have been and potentially too late in some cases.

I don’t know what the next few weeks will bring and I don’t know what to believe really. If we lift the lockdown, will there be a second peak? I fear this virus will always be around now so surely we have to live. Noone is safe ever. You can crash in a car, get cancer, have a heart attack. We take risks every time we drive, smoke, even eat and drink because we are always told some food or other increases our risk of premature death. But we live. We love. We go places. We do things. How long can we live locked up like this?

We are in the groove, I know what this life is, and day by day we are fine and happy. What comes next makes me apprehensive and I don’t dare to hope yet that this is a brief interlude to our life. I want to hope we can get back to normal but I fear this pandemic will have changed many things for us, and that there is no going back to the way it was.

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