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I am including this selection of two photos of my bedroom window, as this has been the dominant view and my sole saving grace throughout lockdown. The photo on the left was taken in my first week of lockdown on the twenty third of March, which was the first week that I began to stay at home as I am asthmatic and was very concerned about my own health making me more vulnerable. The second photo was taken on the first of June, and marks ten weeks since my own ‘lockdown’ began, I have somewhat lost track of the various stages of lightening of restrictions as I was still mostly avoiding going out up until the point when the second photo was taken. In many ways my asthma and anxiety made this experience pretty traumatising, I stopped walking my dog because I people kept patting her and I had too much anxiety about the conflict of constantly asking people not too, and I was worried about the contact risk to myself from people touching my dog. After the rate of community transmission stabilised, I felt safer going out to places, but then I found the secondary anxiety of people behaving in rude and hostile ways towards me in public due to my obvious coughing or wheezing from asthma after I had an obvious asthma attack in Officeworks. My isolation has thus been pretty intense and long lasting compared to some others and combined with anxiety has induced an intense sensation of feeling trapped in my bedroom. The access to sunlight and fresh air through this window, as well as my beautiful view has been a literal visual lifeline, I found myself taking lots of photos of the window and my view. In many ways I feel like this has made me far more attentive than I have ever had the opportunity to be to the changes between night and day, and the slow seasonal change into winter.

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This item was submitted on June 7, 2020 by Madeleine Rowe using the form “Share Your Story” on the site “A Journal of the Plague Year”:

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