VIRAL VITALITIES – A JOURNAL OF SELF-ISOLATING

Published by Paul Hatcher on

Day 1 – Tuesday 17th March, 2020

Up until approximately 2.00am this morning, I was convinced I had this Coronavirus thing beaten. You see, I never get sick. At least it happens extremely rarely indeed. I am one of those annoying people who can be surrounded by all kinds of typical sicknesses and simply not receive them. Many years ago, I decided that whenever I felt even a twinge of a headache knocking on the door, I would tell it to leave immediately. The same with any hint of a cold or flu symptom. I might very occasionally get the odd cough but invariably it will only last for a day or two.

My wife was beginning to show symptoms of Covid-19 over the past weekend and I was determined not to succumb to it also. Obviously, based on the relentless news and near-apocalyptic scenes all over the world, this was going to be a bit tougher than the viruses I’m used to swatting away like an annoying fly.

Then the news came through that if anyone in your household was displaying symptoms of Covid-19, you have to ‘self-isolate’ for fourteen days.

A few hours later, I was struggling to sleep – given that my wife was barely able to breathe once she was lying down next to me. Then suddenly, I began to feel…well…not quite myself.

After trying to suppress the need to visit the bathroom, I eventually slowly trotted off to discharge any waste material that could be threatening to make me feel even more uncomfortable.

Before I knew it, I was discharging the usual non-pleasantries at both ends! I was horrified and now not feeling very comfortable at all.

Because I hadn’t eaten a great deal, it was a very dry retching coming out of my throat. I immediately had a flashback to the time I was making a film in Pakistan and found myself sprawled cross the bathroom floor of my hotel room in Lahore. I had made the mistake of inadvertently drinking what I thought was mineral water from the mini bar. It wasn’t mineral water of course but merely tap water repackaged in an Evian bottle.

Anyway, the truth is last night was nowhere near as drawn out and painful as all those years ago in Pakistan but it was still pretty unpleasant and I had to bow to the almost certain reality that I had been ‘Corona-ed’.

I woke up this morning however, feeling right as rain again, and at the time of writing (around 17.30) I still feel fine. Go figure…

The challenge today was how to begin adjusting to what could turn out to be the new reality for so many people, having no choice but to work from home.

I am no stranger to the discipline required to do this day in, day out. But when almost everyone you know is having to do the same thing due to an unprecedented outbreak of viral infection, it certainly puts a different twist on things.

Suddenly you should no longer feel all alone on the days you do work from home. In a bizarre way however, if you’re not careful to remain positive, the ‘self-isolating’ can make one feel extremely alone.

I have decided I will aim to make the most of this enforced method of working by improving the online presence of my coaching business.

I have already been working on some ideas and because I don’t possess anything resembling a marketing budget to speak of, I am having to adopt the Fast-Cheap-Good triangular approach to getting things done.

That is to say, anything I produce online is hopefully going to be good and cheap – therefore it will not be fast. As opposed to good and fast, which would certainly not be cheap.

This being the first day of enforced ‘working from home’ with a potentially long term view, it went reasonably well. One of my wife’s colleagues shared a lovely image…

Tomorrow, I will continue in my very slow work of creating an improved online presence.

My aim is to keep a daily journal of self-isolating at the same time.

Let’s see what happens…

Just as with the very real trials, tragedies and tribulations of this Coronavirus pandemic, we are in uncharted waters.

I hope you enjoy the journey with me.


Paul Hatcher

I am at heart, a communicator. I love to use words, whether written or spoken and maximise those words to hopefully, bring some encouragement - literally, to put courage into the hearts & minds of those who read or hear them. In my work as an executive coach, speaker, workshop facilitator, I love also to listen...deeply, and then respond with some encouragement.