I’m determined that I’m not going to let lockdowns deter me from having deep, meaningful, and yes, often trivial conversations with my nearest and dearest.

I admit that my outlook has gone from international global traveler to confined house-bound inmate and that my mindset is in turmoil and conflict.

I’ve done the cleaning, the sorting, the binge viewing. All things that I’m capable and willing to do on my own.

But I still instinctively know that I need to have conversations with others. I need to have verbal input into my day just as I need to express my physical frustrations and desires with anonymous men on my internet dating apps.

Keeping Me Sane

Conversations are keeping me sane, and my mental health needs all the support it can get. Having my life cycle thrown into disarray without any training for such an occurrence has been a big obstacle. Nearly everything today is different from what my life was a couple of years ago. My travel is no longer international, or even intra-state – it’s a walk to the local shops. My dating is non-existent, as home visitations are forbidden. My cultural visits to theatres, cinemas, and restaurants are intermittent at best.

What I have discovered is the value of a fixed-price mobile telephone plan with unlimited calls Australia-wide and to selected overseas countries.

My conversations now rarely last less than an hour and often much longer. The chat is frequently about exploring happy memories together, and I admit to belly laughs more than once in many of the conversations. I’ve learned about closely guarded secrets from chats that, because they were not face-to-face, allowed a freeing up of defensive barriers.

Taking The Initiative To Make The Calls

I’ve established a whole new rapport with my overseas sibling. Previously unspoken subject matters have been discussed. I’ve had Zoom calls with ill friends. I’ve watched lovers having sex. I’ve cried with fellow mourners because of deaths.

I’ve therefore not felt as isolated from life as I might have, had I not taken the initiative to make those telephone calls.

Because of the conversations I’ve had in parks, shops, and streets with neighbours, dog walkers, potential lovers, and total strangers, I innately know that I’m doing ok.

Not brilliantly, but by reaching out through conversations, I still feel part of the life-stream. It’s the cheapest and easiest way for all of us to get through isolation while awaiting more ‘normal’ times ahead. Let’s keep talking!

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