16.8 weeks. 118 days. 2,832 hours.
That’s how long Melbourne has endured lockdown.
Unfortunately, being a Melbournian, I’ve had time to do the math. Endless time.
Hearing the news today that the lockdown will be extended for yet another seven days, felt both expected and crushingly disappointing in one hit.
Watch: Thank you to masks. Post continues below.
Upon receiving the news I silently placed my phone down and, feeling a lump form in my throat, I plastered on a false smile to tell my children once again they would not be returning to school.
This fourth lockdown in Melbourne feels different. Less desperate and frantic.
What began as a thrill seeking roller coaster of adrenaline and fear has been replaced with a monotonous merry-go-round.
Despite our cries of “please stop, I want to get off now”, there appears to be no end in sight.
We have become hardened by the isolation and the depressing familiarity. Round and round we go.
We are witnessing once again the closure of our schools, the cancellation of our social lives, our freedom, our workplaces, our human connection.
Smiles erased with masks, and hands, whilst clean, remain unheld.
Days have once again become repetitive and long.
Instead of searching for the finish line and checking the daily numbers, I have instead turned away. I just try to survive hour by hour, moment by moment.
A heavy fog of 'just get on with it' seems to be the mantra we must learn to live by.
As a city we have suffered and sacrificed greatly to keep our loved ones safe. It has been a necessary evil. But even the hardiest of us are beginning to question when is enough, enough?