I woke up today knowing that if I step out of my home I'll be wearing a mask. On Thursday morning, if I do the same I'll be only able to leave for four reasons - again with a mask on.
The bitter pill of a return to lockdown has been tough for many people in regional areas.
There is a sense of ennui - listlessness and disappointment at this turn of events and dissatisfaction as plans are put on hold, again. For some there is anger, others frustration.
Amid all this new change, I am looking at staying optimistic. Yes there will be tough days. Yes there will be a return to homeschooling. There will be no more family gatherings, no sitting in cafes, no travel.
But it's only for a while. And it's to help everybody.
As Premier Dan Andrews said in announcing the new restrictions: "Please be calm, please be kind, please be patient. I understand people will feel scared and sad and worried. But we are Victorians - and we will get through this as Victorians. With grit, with guts and together."
So I'm planning a program to stay engaged - and not just binge watching a new series.
It's a work in progress, but it started this morning by picking up a long-mothballed passion for yoga. I was up early, standing on the mat in the weak winter light and just enjoying being in the moment.
I had a list for the last lockdown I never got through (that ennui again), so I'm dusting that off.
Last night I was scanning the night sky to see the constellations (and as a bonus there was a wonderful halo around the moon).
A few tubs need to be prepped for spring crops and I'm sprucing up my road bike so that I can get out for exercise in the glorious spring weather we've been having.
Dusting off my Marie Kondo vibe and sorting out the cupboards is also on the to-do list.
As is digging into my back catalogue of music.
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I'll be back on Zoom with friends and family (there's a remote birthday dinner already planned for one) and looking for ways to stay connected.
We'll come out the other side of this - together, as a community.
That's what people in the rural areas do so well - look after each other.
It's one of the main reasons we live in the country.
Juanita Greville, Acting Editor
- What are you planning on doing to stay optimistic during this new lockdown? I'd love to hear from you - contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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