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Member’s stories: Life in lockdown

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Anne & Neil’s story

Covid 19 – Life in Lockdown

April 2020

We have been married and living together for a few years.

At the start of lockdown we struggled to get the food we needed to eat. The panic buying meant that shelves were bare. We can only go shopping when we get paid, so the start of lockdown was a problem for us. The items we need are a little easier to get hold of now though.

The supermarkets where we live have given set days for people who are vulnerable to do their shopping, but this doesn’t really help us because our money goes in to our bank account on a different day.

Supermarkets are also strict about letting one person per trolley in to their stores. Anne and I have to shop together as we support each other. It is very awkward and embarrassing when we are told we have to speak with a manager about our needs to shop together.

Neither of us have had a letter from the Dr to say that we are vulnerable and need to shield, but Anne does have some health issues so she doesn’t go out unless we have to do shopping.

We find understanding the rules about lockdown quite difficult at times. They change a lot and that is a worry. We’ve had some support to understand the rules and we think we are following them as we should be at the moment.

Our dog has been having some issues pulling his fur out. He is a very active dog and we think he’s stressed about the change to his routine. He’s used to going for a walk 4 times a day. From what we understand about the rules, Neil can only take the dog out for a walk once a day at the moment. We don’t have a private back garden where we can let him out often.

The vet is only open for emergencies so we have done what we can by asking for advice at a pet store. After chatting with someone a few days ago we realise that we can try to give the vet a ring for phone advice if we need to. We didn’t think we were allowed to call the vet which was a worry.   

Usually Neil has 2 hours of support a week, and he has a coffee and an update to chat about support needs and how thigs are going. That’s not been able to happen since lockdown so we’ve relied on phone calls and video calling through social media to stay connected.

We are so worried about our phone and internet being cut off as they are a real life line more than ever right now. We worry if we got sick, we would be cut off from being able to call for help. Paying the bills in the usual way is not possible. We usually pay over the counter. It is really hard trying to pay over the phone as the lines are so busy.

We ordered a new bed a few weeks ago. It was due to be delivered on 31st March. We are so glad we didn’t throw the other one away as the new one didn’t arrive, and nobody told us that it wasn’t going to be delivered until after lockdown.

We are finding that communication is really hard for a lot of things right now. We feel quite vulnerable.

Although Anne’s medication is delivered to the house and that’s one less thing to worry about, Anne’s anxiety migraines have been getting much worse over the last few weeks. We are trying to support each other and stay connected with friends and family, but our mental wellbeing is a worry.

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