Training for life in isolation

Drawing of woman training herself to kneel, as if a trainer with dog.

Training for life in isolation

We all need training for life in isolation. We need to change so many habits. Hand-washing, social distancing, the way we shop… I know you could make a long list of habits you have started or stopped or changed (or tried to) since the appearance of Covid-19.

And who will do this training? If we’re adults, it must be self-training. We’re both the trainer and the dog. We design the training programme, we issue the commands, we obey the commands, we give the rewards and we accept the rewards.

One new habit of mine is the daily Bad Drawing. Every morning before getting out of bed I have to do one. This new habit is teaching me so much. When I make a hideous anatomical mistake I don’t redo the drawing because I know from experience that the new one will be worse. So I stick some white paper over the worst bit and patch it up. The patches are obvious: see the kneeling-woman’s leg? But I don’t care. I’m the ultimate don’t care, whaddya-gonna-do-to-me practitioner of bad drawing. But I love this new habit, I love what the drawings tell me about myself, and especially I love the colouring in.

17 thoughts on “Training for life in isolation

  1. I love your drawings too 🙂

    1. Rachel McAlpine says:

      Thank you Michelle: then I will try not to improve 🙂

      1. Perfect just the way they are 😀

  2. Interesting to think that toddlers today, are learning these habits easily and will probably take them as just their ‘normal’, the way they have adapted to devices and screen technology etc. I feel we are going to be very cautious even after lockdown ends, and the old ring a ring around the rosie song (part of our childhoods), suddenly sounds much more potent and ominous.

    1. Rachel McAlpine says:

      Good point. And we are better educated now. For instance, I learned yesterday that hand-washing does not just wash away the coronovirus: the soap bubbles kill it. That’s from an official Australian podcast, Coronacast, 10 minutes daily.

  3. I like the drawings and wouldn’t have seen that knee on my own. It is a time of involuntary learning.

  4. Kim says:

    I am glad I have a creative outlet. It would be very tough going through this without it. 🙂

    1. Rachel McAlpine says:

      True, it’s a treat for me too. But people are finding new creative activities in lockdown

  5. Sadje says:

    I think your drawings are great.

    1. Rachel McAlpine says:

      Anyone would think I was fishing for compliments! But I’m very happy you like them.

      1. Sadje says:

        I think you are good. I try to draw but they look just like jumbled up lines.

  6. cedar51 says:

    Well my “new training” is actually a bit like “something long ago” – I’d become a creature of habit with “food/eating” – it was not a bad habit, it was quite healthy. Much of it had to do with my “poor wobbly hands” and “using tools”. I often ate out, not like in chef/restaurant and things that I could manage easily.

    Now I can’t go out…and most of those eateries are not seen as essential. So grabbing a filled roll isn’t on the cards…

    I realised quickly I had to find an online meal service – 4 readymade meals arrive Sun each week – I do have a limited choice, and some of it’s interesting but it’s kind of generic. I then discovered that my usual online supermarket had every other bod chewing up delivery spots. My C/19 helper can’t be getting my weeks supply – she has a big family.

    Something had to happen…and it has! A pretty large food box for one (I’m home alone in my bubble) – it had some entertaining things in it. Some of the things completely new to me, but all edible. Except the cucumber and I gifted that to the new guy in U2.

    What the “new training” is – is cooking, baking, roasting and the like… AND then around aspects of “nope, there isn’t a truly big sharp knife here…” “nope, there isn’t a suitable lidded casserole dish for the oven” … but “hey, I know I have a big toaster some place…” and earlier but now resolved “so you want a medium bowl to mix this up in and you have super huge or small”

    all this has be tailored in a very small kitchen and a person with extreme hand disabilities..

    so in a way it’s just like “your drawing, Rachel” learning again!

    1. Rachel McAlpine says:

      That’s kind of exciting. Very difficult, but your creativity is saving the situation.

  7. alison41 says:

    I have a different question: we haven’t had Ursula’s opinion for several weeks – a sore throat? hibernating? sulking? a more positive occupation than my suggestions? perhaps a drawing of my favourite feline? (other than Simon’s cat, but he’s just an out & out hooligan, not in the same class as Ursula, sorry for my thoughtless pairing).

    1. Rachel McAlpine says:

      Allison, you’re right, she has been so lazy. I will seek an audience with her today.

  8. Ingrid Ward says:

    I have come to know that there are no mistakes, only lessons!

    1. Rachel McAlpine says:

      That’s a useful mantra for the times. Except… It’s important to learn from the lessons and that doesn’t happen with everyone. Stay well.

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