Lessons from Lockdown - Stories from over 50s in Haringey

Coronavirus has meant much more time at home for many of us. We spoke to three over 50s in Haringey and asked them what kept them positively motivated during lockdown.
Elderly woman smiling face on to the camera

For many of us, being in lockdown during the early phase of the pandemic was a worrying time, especially older people and those with underlying health conditions. But as the weeks went by, people found ways to help them through those darker days. We spoke to three over 50s in Haringey and asked them what kept them positively motivated during the period of uncertainty, what advice they would give to others of a similar age in a similar situation, and if they had a favourite positive quote or line of wisdom to share with others.

Keep humour in your life all the time.
— Molly, 84

Molly, 84, lives with her pet bird Billy in Muswell Hill, Haringey. She enjoys television, especially sitcoms, but is determined to “keep moving”, staying as fit as possible. “I read encouraging things and watch programmes that make me laugh. I move around the flat, I go to the kitchen and to the living room and back. I keep moving inside.”

Alongside the exercise, Molly always makes room for a giggle so she doesn’t focus too much on her aches and pains. “I watch ‘Last of The Summer Wine’ and ‘As time Goes By’”, and she’s often joined by Billy who “listens to everything and keeps me company.”

Her one line of wisdom? “Keep humour in your life all the time.”

I like to write poetry, but I don’t feel like writing all the time.
— Aisha, 75
Aisha, 75, lives alone in Tottenham Hale. She suffers from anxiety, but she’s found that varying her routine keeps her in a positive frame of mind, and she has taken up Zumba. “I like to write poetry, but I don’t feel like writing all the time. So sometimes I do other things. Sometimes I do Zumba, watching my DVD, or I listen to Radio 2 and Capital Gold”, and like some of us she has used the lockdown as an opportunity to learn new skills. “I have also started to do knitting. I am knitting a scarf at the moment.”
 
Aisha firmly believes “Every dark cloud has a silver lining”.  We’re sure you’ll agree that her courageous personality shines through in this lovely poem she wrote for us:
 
Love another human being as yourself,
Help one another, if you can,
Respect one another,
Live and let live,
Do not envy, do not hate,
If something makes you upset,
Just forgive and forget,
You don’t have to miserable, sad and lost,
Let’s count our little blessings,
Love life and make the most!
Don’t give up hope. Hope is important! Don’t watch too much news all the time, it will make you depressed!
— Flavia, 77

Flavia, 77, from Bounds Green, lives alone and likes to keep in touch with her friends by phone. She’s lucky enough to have a garden which means she can get some fresh air. Even though her movements have been reduced, she says “I remain cheerful and I don’t see any point to be miserable”. She doesn’t feel bad about treating herself either. “As I can’t go out, I order some nice takeaways…I can enjoy myself, can’t I? No one can stop me.”

Flavia has some words of advice for others in a similar situation who may be struggling with the way the world seems to have changed for the worse, “Don’t give up hope. Hope is important! Don’t watch too much news all the time, it will make you depressed!”  

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