Dyslexic tales · Lockdown · Memoirs · Short Stories

Lock down

I never mean to disappear from the blog but sometimes the whole world can get too much. Then I hold on to myself and my mind. I don’t want to share my thoughts or give any news. I am just eager to be me and work it out myself.

It can be scary and worrying.

Lock down has been a scary time. I wanted to take time to understand that the world was changing. My visits to uni and friends disappeared. OI know I work from home but this was different. To be not allowed to visit your mum. That was the hardest. But now the new has become old…

Maybe this will make more sense about what was happening in my little aspergic head:

P is for Pandemic

“How are you?”
“How are you coping”
“How is the world with you?”
“How are you?”
I’m fine.
All is good.
Coping fine.
I’m okay…

But what does that mean? I ask myself. How do I put into words that I’m not completely fine? That my focus is missing.

Most people lose their keys, but for me it is my focus. I can still do jobs and I do them, but the all-consuming tight focus has done a bunk. Instead, it is obsessed with a computer game, all dystopian and zombified in a world where no one works together. I go to battle with a sword and a crowbar and take on the world.

My focus has slipped.

I’m coping fine. I get up and I carry on. I kill a screeching zombie and cut a tree down. I sit and stare at a blank page for half an hour and then go back to the dystopian world that is so much easier to understand than the one I am in.

Even the world I am creating on the screen doesn’t hold me captive. Normally my focus is so complete that you won’t see me move for hours. I load my shotgun with ammunition containing my hyper focus and I fire. But now that focus only sees the game. The game is easy. There are rules and I understand them. You stay within your square…

But isn’t that like the house? My reality is a square of home. I am safe here. Sure I venture out to do battle at the shops and for a walk, essential exercise, but is it not the same? There are rules in reality.

But they aren’t the same.

Before, I knew that I could go out and people would smile and I’d smile back. Now they wear a mask. With a mask on how can you see if people are happy or angry? And if they are angry how do you know if you need to run?

Keep a 2 metre distance. But I forget and get too close and then people tut. Except those with masks. They always get too close. I get scared. I panic…

A is for Autism

Children, the news says, can go out more than once if they have autism.

Why just children? Does it stop when you reach eighteen? It didn’t with me. Does that make me weird? Am I alone? Sometimes I feel alone. Adrift on that sea we all have a boat on. Except I feel I am going the other way and no matter how much I tack I can’t get to where everyone else is. They all stand on their boats and clap for the NHS and key workers.

I’m not a key worker.

I tell stories through writing and art.

Is that not essential?

Watch films and stories, people say. But isn’t that art? Surely they ought to support those workers.

N is for No-one

Nobody here but us freaks. That is what I feel like. Why can’t I get the new rules in my head? Only exercise once a day…

Unless I were a child…

New rules, the news says.

Oh no, I say.

If you have a learning disability then you can exercise more than once, they say.

Okay, I can do that. What if I don’t want to?

These rules only apply if you want to.

Before the rules of social interaction applied all the time. I understood them… These new rules are always changing.

I have three learning difficulties. All of which put me on that list.

Here’s the other list, they say.

I look. I’m on that one. I ought to be careful… What does that mean? Not go out? But what if I need to go out. The list says I can.

Which list?

Which rule?

Lockdown does not suit me. It’s like an ill-fitting dress that ought to look good but doesn’t. I work from home, I socialise only once a week. I spend all my time with one other person. This dress ought to fit me like a glove. But it is too tight around my chest and covers my head and I know it looks awful.

I is for Information

It is everywhere.

On the internet.

On Facebook.

Covid 19 is caused by 5G… What? A bat bit a person in a wet market… Burn all the cell towers! Vitamin C will protect you. Inject disinfectant…

What?

What is right? Information comes in waves, cresting as it hits Facebook to splash in my face.

I don’t believe the 5G thing… Our broadband hub has been pumping out 5G waves for ages and I am no madder than I was. Please note – autism and learning difficulties are from birth and I haven’t suddenly ‘developed’ them. Burning cell towers will get you a bill and a look at a cell. See that play on words? That is what my brain does and then chuckles. Does anyone else’s brain chuckle at them?

Filter the information.

Vitamin C is okay – it helps the immune system. Too much and you pee it out. That is what can give you strong pee… Happens often if you take a vitamin C pill. No harm in that.

Disinfectant? That is a no-brainer. You will die. And not a pleasant death.

The bat… Well, yes. But probably not a bite. More likely as the dead animal was being skinned. An unfortunate accident. The wrong bat caught. The one in a million that had a mutated form of the virus that could be passed on. Oops. No one’s fault.

But it was China, they say.

But it was the USA, they say.

It was just a mutation, I whisper. Nothing more. Nature surviving.

C is for Chaos

Chaos rules.

It states that no one thing can ever be repeated identically. No ball leaves a tennis player’s hand exactly the same. And no virus is ever identical to another.

Did you know we mutate? All the time our cells are growing and reproducing. Just like a photocopier. But no one replaces the ink so mistakes happen. As we get older our hair goes white.

I read that if you get a virus the cells in your hair can turn off. You lose pigment but you gain a natural antiviral medication. It floods your system to help you survive. It is your scar from the virus. Your badge to say you survived.

How can I manage this world?

The rules change and they make no sense.

Stay 2 metres apart, but Covid swims in the air on micro droplets which will survive for hours, suspended. If you take the exact same path…

But can you do that?

Does chaos not play its part?

BAMEs get it worse. I’m Indian. I’m autistic. I’m learning disabled. I’m not coping.

I should.

Lockdown is made for those who work from home, they say.

No, I cry as I pick up my computer game and switch to a world driven by individualism and zombies, it is made for those that can adapt and follow new rules.

I’ll get there. Eventually.

Until then I will not keep calm and carry on.

I will panic.

Until one day I won’t.

Because the new rules will be old rules and I will understand them, the new that has become the old.

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