COVID-19, I think everyone knows what it is by now and is feeling the effects of this highly contagious virus. People have lost holidays from the travel bans and others are worrying about loss of earnings and having to self-isolate. Our freedom of movement is being compromised and many aren’t dealing with the restrictions very easily.
Hopefully all of this will be over in a few months, but imagine if this was actually your life day in day out, forever.
So many disabled people, people with chronic illness and the blind to name just a couple, live in isolation and fear every single day. Too poorly to get out of bed, some people with chronic illness spend weeks isolated at home on their own, not able to socialise with others, plan holidays and have a constant worry about a lack of income. People diagnosed with vision loss don’t know if they will be out of a job once their vision progresses and are often trapped at home due to not being able to drive and having nobody around them to support them and take them shopping or to appointments. Some days too anxious to leave their house in case they can’t read the bus number or be able to navigate where they are going.
Now imagine you have booked your dream holiday and you are so excited, but the week before you have a big relapse and are too poorly to go, not the first time this has happened and you know there is very little point in re-booking. You then spend the next few weeks lying in bed in isolation, dreaming of the holiday that could have been and wishing so much that you were like everyone else and had all your freedom.
Imagine having to cancel going to your best friend’s wedding because you feel too anxious to stand in a crowd of people you don’t know for fear of feeing disorientated and unable to recognise faces and worrying that you are going to make fool of yourself because your vision has become so bad. Having to cancel a meal out with your partner because there is no wheelchair access. the list goes on.
Luckily for the majority of people the situation right now of cancelled plans will be temporary, but for many, it’s just what they are used to.
Unfortunately, during this crisis, it’s the vulnerable yet again, that are suffering the most. This virus has bought out the selfish in some people who are stock piling extortionate amounts of essential items such as dried and tinned foods, toiletries, baby items and special dietary foods. People are taking up delivery slots that a lot of disabled people rely on to be able to eat weekly. Shopping in chaos when you are blind or have sensory issues can be distressing and some people are only thinking about themselves through all of this.
At this present moment, we need to pull together, support the vulnerable and check up on those who may be finding this harder than others. It will also be a time that may highlight severe anxiety in some. Instead of being selfish we need to support each other, we need to be kind and thoughtful. Lend a helping hand where it is needed, but also remember, when this has all died down and everyone else carries on with the life that they are used to, please don’t forget the vulnerable, it’s not just during this time that they may need your support or help, they may suffer in silence more than you have ever been aware of before ♥️.