It’s Day 70 of the South African lockdown. Perhaps this is a sign that I’ve truly lost my mind, but I’m going to get real and blog about my love life today.

Throughout this long, arduous lockdown blogging marathon, many readers have thanked me for my honesty — for expressing how I really feel about what’s happening to me and to the world. But there is one huge topic I’ve almost completely ommitted: my personal life.

Intimate relationships are difficult to blog about even during “normal” times, and I’m always very careful and intentional about it. Lockdown has turned love, sex, and relationships into even bigger blogging taboos than they were before — especially for single people.

And yet love, relationships, and sex have been the most frequently recurring conversation topics among my single friends, and even many of my non-single friends, during the pandemic. Lockdown breakups, lockdown hookups, lockdown fighting, lockdown online dating, lockdown in-person dating…It’s all happening. We’re all thinking about it but no one is talking about it, at least not publicly. So here goes.

I reconnected with an ex during lockdown. Or he reconnected with me, and I let it happen even though I knew it was probably (okay, definitely) a bad idea.

The apocalypse is nigh, I told myself. And while I’m very happy to be living alone during this lockdown…do I really want to DIE alone? Just kidding (sort of). That was my excuse.

So, that happened. Obviously I can’t go into detail or confess to breaking any laws. But things ended badly, which is no surprise, and this is part of the reason for my current despondent state. Like, I’m joking about it but really it’s quite painful. I feel very alone and the apocalypse might very well still be nigh (#KiddingNotKidding).

This story doesn’t have a clear point. But I want to put it out there. I’m sure a lot of people in the world are suffering from various types of lockdown-related relationship sadness right now, and many are suffering in silence.

I know of at least one person whose marriage is breaking up during the pandemic. I know another who went through a breakup days before lockdown and then wound up trapped in the same house with her ex. I know others who dearly love their partners but are losing their minds being stuck at home together for weeks on end. Still others are just…lonely.

Some of these love life problems are relatively trivial (like mine) and some are very serious. All of it sucks though, and we’re all particularly emotionally vulnerable right now. I have a right to be sad and angry (yoh, I am so angry) about my heartbreak and so do you, even though there are currently much bigger problems in the world.

I hope writing this will make me feel better, and maybe some of the silent heartbroken out there among you will feel better too. Please pass it on to anyone else who needs to know they’re not alone.

Today’s Featured Artist

Today I’m featuring one of my favorite Limpopo artists, Pilato Bulala, who makes incredible sculptures out of scrap metal. I blogged about Pilato in my Ode to Limpopo last year.

Scrap metal art by Pilato Bulala
Scrap metal art by Pilato.
Pilato Bulala
Pilato is the best guy.

Pilato is making some amazing new COVID-19-themed pieces right now, and like all artists — especially artists based in rural areas, where tourists can’t currently go — has very little means to earn a living during the pandemic.

But with some help from the staff at Madi a Thavha, Pilato is still able to sell his work and ship it — even overseas. Please connect with him on Facebook, Instagram, or WhatsApp at +27-72-343-1202 for more information.

Be strong, friends. Or as the Afrikaners say: Sterkte. Talk to you tomorrow.

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