I think a bit of a summing up will be helpful for me at this point. At the start of 2020 I had got to a point where I was just about ready to start trying to reconstruct my life and move forward again. My confidence was rather lacking but I managed to pull my self together sufficiently to front a couple of gigs and at that point in February I felt like I was on the mend again and could start getting out into the world again. I still had the anxiety and arthritis problems but they were not so bad at that point. Then of course at the end of February the lockdown kicked in and the plans I had to link up with a few people were stymied. For the first few weeks I was frustrated but OK. But after my self esteem started dropping and I started to feel pretty useless about myself in often depressed and then on top of that started to have anxiety attacks. Often just triggered by a random thought or the prospect of going somewhere. So I have got more and more isolated as time has gone on and my confidence is pretty much at zero in some regards. I have never had to ability to be an easy mixer or make new friends easily. I am not antisocial but I am awkward and small talk is difficult for me so the normal avenues to making new friends and acquaintances are difficult for me to follow.
As the year has progressed I have found it more difficult to keep things together.
I do have a routine for most days which is to practice sight reading and spend a bit of time working up musical themes for songs and other works. I write stuff down on manuscript in a condensed form to keep the germ of the ideas. If I am working on a recording (which is most weeks) I put down parts and premix stuff. Part of the day may also be spent on a remote rehearsal/ collaboration session. In between that there are various exercises I need to do to stop myself from ceasing up. This week I have also managed to get out once a day which is helping with the depressive side of things a little.
When I moved out of London I had hoped to get more involved with collaborative side of recording as I now have the space to work with 2 or 3 people live, and had Vicky and the Delta Ladies continued that potentially would have made for some very interesting sonic interludes along the way. Sadly the fates intervened and it was not to be. I really had hoped to try and hook up with some local players and see what might be done but that did not go to well either.
If we ever get out of this Covid-19 centric universe again it will be rather like starting from zero in many ways. I cannot imagine a normal world where one can lean on a bar listening at a folk club or music pub again. Just being able to nip out and catch a gig again would be great but it is almost impossible to do anything casually like that now. I feel that we are in for up to another 2 years, before there is any chance of real normality. Maybe by next year this time there will be a light dawning. I really dont know, but thats how its looking at the moment on the basis of everything I see in from the medical and research community.
I note that many people seem to believe we dont have a problem or that Covid is not real or anywhere near as dangerous as it actually is. That is really not helping.
I am not on my own and its much worse for those that live alone of course, and I dont have a job to loose so I should l be able to just about roll along and keep the wolf from the door but that will not be an option for many others, and I do worry how people will survive let alone thrive. As I write this I am listening to “The New Deal – A Story For Our Times” on Radio 4. A bleak time but there was hope and things did eventually get back to normal in some respects. In contrast to the current covid threat where it seems that “Normal” is nowhere to be seen or hidden under a rock somewhere and realistically there does not seem to be much hope of sunny uplands being reached anytime soon.