The Other Side Of The Lockdown Coin: The Positive One

Photo By: Markus Winkler/Unsplash

If I think back to how much things have changed in the last year, it almost seems to me that I am witnessing the screening of a film in the role of a spectator. And most unusual of all is that it was actually one of the best and most satisfying years of my life, during which I achieved multiple goals.

That sense of inadequacy, that feeling of not being up to par, of not being enough, of not arriving on time. Tick tock, the clock of the universe and a quick dish. I remember it well. Late for what? That it was just my problem, I can't believe it. Or maybe yes. But the point is, in a world where everything stops you can't be late.

And this means that you can finally get your head out of the water and take a deep breath of air, dry your eyes and see clearly what surrounds you and above all realize that swimming is less difficult than you thought and that the seabed it's dark, but all in all, it can be done. A year ago I couldn't see the horizon. Not at all.

I still remember February 29, 2020, when we all still didn't know that the apocalypse would soon be, and I remember it well because at 6 am I was running away from a toxic situation towards the airport, with a huge blue suitcase. I was ditching everything, for the second time in my life, but the difference was that I should have done it alone, not in company. At the destination, there would be no friendly face, no warm bed, no certainty.

Just me, my baggage (physical and otherwise) and a lot of courage crammed in the middle of pink pyjamas and sweaters by Zara. When the plane took off I said goodbye to what had been my home for a long time, but was actually poisoning me; I needed lifeblood and no one but me could give it to me.

The Ryanair flight from Bologna landed on British soil at 8:30 am local that morning, despite the fog and bad weather causing quite a bit of turbulence on board, the exhausting wait. While I was queuing with the other passengers for passport control, I was looking at the UK border sign and in my head, all thoughts took a definite shape. I had done it.

What would become of me? I spent the first night hugging myself on an unmade bed, in an apartment rented online two weeks before my departure. I was scared, very scared, but I was not scared and I couldn't be because I had the extreme need to believe in myself so that I could succeed in my plans.

More than 365 days have passed since the outbreak of the pandemic, from the forced social closure and I have learned many things from this experience, but of all the most important is to appreciate loneliness and discuss my fears. Discuss animatedly, if necessary, because they cannot reveal themselves without motivating their presence.

My sudden changes of ideas are always present but less poisonous because thanks to all the time spent with myself I was able to examine my personal history, collecting all the memories and focal points, venturing into meticulous and endless empirical research. I remembered what I love to do and I discovered sides of my character that I didn't know at all.

I enrolled in college in London at 26, 23 of which I spent in a place where we are taught the infamous lie that at some point in your life you should give up. But do you know the most important thing? I understood how much life, through some magical way, tries to give back what it has taken and for this, I am immensely grateful to it.

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© 2020 by Mental Magazine