The importance of keeping active 

Sad and lonely senior gray-haired Caucasian woman sitting on a sofa in brightly lit living room and

I would class loneliness as an illness. - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

One of the things to come out of the pandemic is people having to occupy themselves with something to do, which hasn’t been easy in a lot of cases.

Going from being incredibly busy five to seven days a week, to having nothing to do, being furloughed, stuck at home within four walls would drive the most sensible people to distraction.

Those who would normally be active in so many ways have had to discover what complete dross is on daytime TV and find something else to do, so? What happened?

Well, over the months I have heard so many stories of houses being painted, inside and out, carpets being laid and all those jobs you have always said you will do tomorrow but never really wanted to, suddenly seem enjoyable and exciting, well, for some of us.

But you can only decorate so many times, cut the grass, clean the garage and so on before you start to look around for something else to do.

As for me, during the first lockdown as someone who loves gardening, it was quite easy as we had a bit of a heatwave during the end of last March into April and I have to admit I have never seen my garden looking so tidy!

But this last one has been much harder and longer with the no going out rule for those of us that are vulnerable, it’s been quite tough, it’s not been easy at all for any of us trying to find something to do.

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Now, imagine you have dementia, or you live in a care home or alone at home? 

Imagine after getting up in a morning, getting dressed and after you have had breakfast, you are sat in a wing-backed chair - don’t even get me going on these as no matter where you turn, you can’t see or hear whose next to you, who ever invented them for care homes needs to have a word with themselves!

So there you are, it's three hours until lunch, five hours until evening meal and a couple of hours after that you are back in bed.

In between that, you have daytime TV and not much else.

To be fair, a lot of care homes have lots going on and activities during the day but a lot don’t, and those who live at home? What of them?

If I had my way I would class loneliness as an illness and prescribe friendship on every medical note.

Yes, it’s been so hard on a lot of us but so much harder on those in care homes etc who have had no family visits or contact with the outside world.

Activity coordinators within care homes are worth their weight in gold, and sometimes it’s the simplest of things that can help so much.

Not all of us like board games, not all of us understand Monopoly or Mousetrap.

But what we do all understand and do need is companionship, that human contact, or the human touch as it’s called and I am sure that’s the thing that’s been missed so much and something we should never forget.

Yes it’s true, I have done more 'Zooming' than I have ever done regarding the Purple Angel organisation and it's kept me in touch in a manner but I really can’t wait for the day we can all meet face to face, without  face masks, no social distancing and most of all, giving each other a huge hug!