Last month I started my dream internship with a publication I’ve always loved. In my mind, my internship was to be of The Devil Wears Prada epic proportions: full of running around, learning from a know-it-all editor, living on coffee and working my way to the top of this cut-throat industry.
My reality? I am currently sitting on my bed, with my laptop on my lap, snacking away as I type my stories for the day and join meetings on Microsoft Teams – in my PJs, of course.
I’m working remotely, not that I have much of a choice.
My daily routine goes a little something like this:
· Wake up
· Brush my teeth and wash my face
· Make breakfast
· Go online and start working
· Shower after meeting my deadlines
· Go back to work
· Start cooking dinner once I’m done working
· Make as many calls as I can
· Wake up
· Have breakfast
· Get back into bed
· Watch series the whole day
· Make as many phone calls as I can
Then, of course, there’s the inconsistent working out and reading that I do from time to time because everywhere I look on Instagram, this is heavily encouraged.
President Cyril Ramaphosa announced on a Monday night that there would be a nationwide lockdown. The lockdown was said to begin at midnight on Thursday 26 March and “end”’ on 16 April at midnight. This was before it got extended. The extension didn’t come as a shock to me, I told my parents at the beginning that we are probably going to be indoors until the end of April.
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The more I thought about the end of April and how close we were to the day we were going to be “free”, the more exhausted I became. I started my internship at the beginning of March. Without sounding dramatic, it was the best thing to happen to me in 2020 so far. I spent two months at home, looking for a job while I watched my peers start theirs. I wasn’t in the right space Imagine how devastated I was to be sent home after just a week at my dream job. What about my ruthless, and cynical Miranda Priestly dreams?
Honestly, I know working from home is the best thing for all of us right now, but it just isn’t how I imagined spending my first year of employment.
Fortunately, my family have been supportive in the sense that they have given me space during this time. Space, however, is something I’m not really sure I want anymore because it has been forced on me due to social distancing.
I want to be outside, we all do, but I definitely don’t want to contract Covid-19 (or spread it).
I wasn’t aware of the fear I’ve had until I realised I have not set foot outside our gate since 17 March – long before lockdown, mind you. I only go outside to hang laundry or feed my dog. The only time I was outside for more than 10 minutes was this past Easter weekend when I kicked around a ball with my two-year-old nephew, within the yard.
If I’m not working – which I do a lot – I’m either watching a series, cooking, baking or on a phone call for more than three hours. Phone calls have been at the top of my list of things that have been keeping me sane. My mental health has also been quite affected and anxiety gets the better of me at the most random of times – like at 1am.
Being indoors, full of anxiety and fear is not the vision I had for my 2020.
For now, I am going to stick to my routine, and maybe add in a few other things . Lockdown isn’t the best, but it is the safest thing for our country now and we all have to do our part.
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