It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! Time to release our fears to the world or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. Every month, the organisers announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. Remember, the question is optional!!!


April 1 question – The IWSG’s focus is on our writers. Each month, from all over the globe, we are a united group sharing our insecurities, our troubles, and our pain. So, in this time when our world is in a crisis with the covid-19 pandemic, our optional question this month is: how are things in your world?

We’re in the North Island of New Zealand, where the whole country has been on lockdown for nearly two weeks, with two weeks still to go, unless the end date gets changed. It’s been so strange, almost haunting, as if one had gone back in time to one’s youth. The air is clear of the usual traffic fumes and jet exhaust and smells different. Clean. The streets ring with the sounds of children playing and adults talking. There are more cyclists than cars on the road, and there are families out walking along the footpaths in droves.

It reminds me of growing up here in the 1960s.

Baby me with sisters

Yet, it’s not like the memories I keep of my childhood because this bucolic idyll is fraught with tension and a keyed-up state of general anxiety. As my friend said the other night, in our virtual drinks, re the Covid-19 virus, “I could have it, you could have it, we could all have it,” and that’s the uneasy truth we’re living with. Every visit to the supermarket, every outing, we feel we’re literally risking our lives. And we are.

Those of us who are parents are also trying to help our children deal with the stress. I have three boys. My two younger boys, my nephew and I are in our “bubble” over here, and my eldest is in a bubble with his own little family on the other side of town. At present, I’m worried about my eldest and his twenty-two-month-old baby. My darling granddaughter has a fever and they’re not sure what it is yet. I’ve been receiving constant updates and staying in contact with them.

Thank goodness for the Internet.


My youngest son has immersed himself either in online schoolwork or in gaming and watching anime. He practices the trombone and drums. He’s not worried about a thing, he is as happy as a sandboy.

My seventeen-year-old Sam has Down syndrome and does not understand the pandemic or anything about lockdown. All he knows is that everything is suddenly different. His weekly chart of activities went from being full with school every day, and extracurricular activities, dance class, gym training, and basketball at night to being stuck at home on endless holiday. For a special needs person, they thrive on routine, and they like things to be the same every day. All Sam knows is the personal disaster of everything changing and becoming different suddenly. His reaction is to act out, to do silly things, or to freeze up and refuse to cooperate with even the simplest of requests. As Sam can’t speak, bad behaviour is his way of expressing himself. However, he’ll get used to the new normal given time.


I’ve been enjoying the virtual meetings. I’ve been attending Toastmasters’ meetings via Zoom every Wednesday. They’ve been a lot of fun. It’s so nice to see everyone and see they’re doing well. I think connecting in whatever ways we can is uplifting. I also attend Friday night virtual drinks with old friends, via Zoom. We’ve known each other since schooldays. We’ve called our soiree “cocktails & pigtails,” and we wear our hair in pigtails, too, for the laughs. I’ve been so grateful for my friends, and I’m on the phone daily with my family. We’re checking up on one another.

I’ve been busy, more so than ever, since lockdown. I’ve been an editing machine and in two weeks, I have edited the entire manuscript of my work-in-progress twice! I’ve also been communicating with the book designer and figuring out how we will redo my first two books and do the design for the third. With luck, I’ll stay on target for publishing The Last Tree by June. I’m still going after my dreams, despite my insecurities, virus or no virus, lockdown or no lockdown.

What about you?


Keep Writing!

Yvette K. Carol


“Life is the love that reaches out, building bridges across gulfs of uncertainty to touch hands, hearts and souls in the experience of union,” – P. Seymour

  1. Olga Godim says:

    It’s hard to keep the kids busy in the lockdown status, especially the ones with special needs, but I’m sure you can do it.


    • yvettecarol says:

      Thanks, Olga! Yes, my friend was saying on Zoom this week that her five-year-old is most put out. He can only do one hour of schoolwork a day (that’s all the little ones can do), and the rest of the time he’s either bored or running riot. I’m thanking my lucky stars that my boys are at least old enough to entertain themselves!


  2. emaginette says:

    Wow! That one busy, busy life. Mine is quiet and it is fine for now. 🙂


  3. cleemckenzie says:

    I have to say that the non-congested roads and families out together sharing time have been beautiful. I remember days like this when I was a kid. I’d forgotten how wonderful and quiet the world around me could be. I’m sorry people are sick and dying, but I’m wondering if we might take something away from this “down time” and make some positive changes in our lives.


    • yvettecarol says:

      Sorry for the late reply – I had a few computer issues – thank you so much for commenting. Yes, I know what you mean. I know people who are struggling with health, with loss, and with anxiety, and yet at the same time, I can’t help but enjoy this quiet spell where life in the city seems to have reverted to when times were simpler and the world a kinder place. I’m hoping a great deal will be learned from this experience.


  4. Dear Yvette. Thank you for this ,now, old update on your life during confinement. Hope things are easier with Sam now. Congratulations on keeping up the social networking … you’ve gone back to Toastmasters, I see. Can I join your drinks and pigtails party , sounds such fun !
    Here, I have Toulouse Speakers and Italian, and my yoga teacher who does online sessions, to whom I am giving a tailored English course, as she now has offers to do training abroad in English. I also translated and recorded a MP3 special SO relaxation tape for therapeutical needs for an Australian friend of her son, dealing with cancer , to listen to before or during chemotherapy. How becoming an English teacher has led to very rewarding outcomes …
    Take care see you on Wednesday for IWSG May.


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