Lockdown Diaries: Tuning In To Tune Out?

Stylonylon sunset shot on Olympus

Tuning in more during lockdown? I know have. To the world, to nature, to the news, myself, to others and yes that funny thing we used to do a lot, to the actual radio…

Tuning into the seasons, the weather and its associated mood ups and downs has surfaced in sharp relief as the days have dissolved into each other. The onset of a squad of warm, sunny magical days never to be forgotten or a fierce storm exciting in its tremulous effect on all in its wake, and the promising relief and release of its eventual demise. The best thing about a storm someone quoted on Instagram today, that it will end.

Are we so glued to the stop and start of seasons because they seem to mimic our own personal transitional cycles? “I’m a summer person”, I’ve always said as that is when life seems to truly come alive and work for me. Or maybe that’s just when I tune in the most.

Clocking the small daily changes on the school run walk every morning up and down the grey and car fumes of pre-lockdown east London streets is hard pushed to light up your heart. I remember seasons so much more clearly as a child. And nature too. The green suburbs of Copenhagen, the sharp dry cold of the snow-laded winters and then the summer fun of hot beaches and warm sea.

I remember those days well and as a teenager just how at one and connected I felt to myself, unusual maybe for that age. And I took that certainty of self with me to a Scottish school where while navigating the trials of a new friends and lessons and evolving teenagerdom, I stopped noticing the seasons. Starting then to tune out. For quite a few years sadly.

At the moment, I’m craving to see the seasons more clearly, to be properly tuned in, to catch up on all the bits I’ve missed over the years. Can I just sit and watch out the window for a while?

Tuning into myself has been key to my recent health challenges, not ignoring my body when it tells me enough is enough, recognising twinges and protests for what they really are – signs of something more serious. Something I laughed at the idea of for so many years. Well, guess what, that awful below-it-all gut feeling something wasn’t quite right, was right all along.

It’s ok, it’s not too late. And tuning back into myself only leads to better tuning in of others, the ones you love around you. And though you take extra time to tune into yourself, you find it easier with them too. And trust me, a child instinctively knows when you’re tuning out and will call you out on it immediately.

Part of my tuning in these last few weeks has been the more literal traversing of the radio waves to find a station. You know like on an old radio. Considerably less WiFi at the moment has lead to the need for pastime pursuits that don’t involve digital surfing or streaming, so I have now a rather snazzy pair of headphones that do nothing other than tune into the radio, which I switch on early morning while I knit my latest sock.

Of course, it’s often news based, tuning into the chaos of the world in an effort to contain and understand it. But there’s a soothing aspect to the action, the kind that we see digitally reflected too, in the success of the podcast. And as you tune in are you simultaneously tuning out? In the name of self-care and self-understanding. Tuning into the seasons to tune out from oneself to tune into one’s deeper self – is that what’s going on here?  Thoughts on a postcard please.

 

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2 Comments

    1. Oh that is the nicest thing to hear Aileen, thankyou so much! More diaries coming soon, now that my laptop is bak up and running! x