Aurore: “At Covid, we all realize we’re mortal”
At the very beginning of the pandemic, the dead were stored in Rungis due to the lack of places in funeral homes. Their relatives were no longer allowed to go to the ceremonies. It embraced me with apprehension. I said to myself: we can’t. Funeral ceremonies are important, they should be beautiful. This idea has not left me alone. A pandemic makes a difference between important people and non -important people. I deduced that I was not essential. I no longer wanted to be a journalist, I wanted to be useful. It’s very fast. I attended a formation. Today, I am a funeral director and work at a funeral agency. I was with the families in arranging the funeral. I never imagined myself before Covid in this environment. Previously, for me, death was a taboo subject. I acted like nothing happened. At Covid, we all realized we were mortal and forced me to face reality. Now, I like the strong relationships I weave with people. Dealing with weak people and bringing them peace is very beneficial. In addition, it gives me great happiness. I understand, along with Covid, that I want to be fulfilled in my job. My husband had the same click. At age 50, he also converted professionally to become a developer. It is an opportunity to listen to our desires and to glimpse a new life that we may not have realized. The analysis I got today from this change? I am happy.
Also read >> Testimonials: what leaving my job taught me
Aurélien: “Now I know why I got up”
I have been a sound engineer for 15 years. I worked primarily with music groups. So I always live in the inner suburbs of Paris. When the confinement was announced, I went to the Gold Coast with my husband to the house we had renovated for a long weekend or vacation. After fifteen days of confinement, I was tired of not moving. I’m starting to go crazy. I bought flour at the mill in the village, called the Moulin du Foulon. Here I met Robert Lallemand, the owner and miller. He works alone. He was 70 years old and I saw him having difficulty carrying 40kg bags on his shoulder. So I offered him my help. At the time of confinement, flour production exploded. He explained to me that he was looking for a buyer for the grinder. Everything is really fast. So I took the grinder with a friend and asked Robert to train me. After confinement, I only returned to Paris once to move. This is pretty radical. I realize in retrospect that I have more disadvantages in Paris than advantages: the price of extra rent, noise, pollution, meters … My husband works in comic book publishing. We figured out a formula where he would telecommute and break up with the site. Today, he works in Paris for three days and the others are away. City dweller and party girl, she will enjoy Parisian life and find such a balance. The only thing I miss in my old life is the man, the cultural effervescence in so many concerts. But now I know why I got up. Working locally to consume more responsibly, that really makes sense to me. Covid is a catalyst. This is the trigger that has allowed us to realize all our desires that we have in the long run. You need to take advantage of this type of event to recover, otherwise you will not do it because it is not the right time to change. There, we were actually leaning against the wall. Being stuck in the Province in the countryside is a sign. There was an alignment of planets: confinement in the countryside, discovering a profession, opportunity to buy a business … I really couldn’t see myself going back to work in Paris.
Lauréna: “I finally accepted the idea that you have to live for yourself and not in relation to others”
I can no longer remember when the lockdown started. Just from the end, which is clear, I can’t stand anything. He loves to sing while working and that’s all he can’t afford. His footsteps on the floor made my hair stand on end. I realized I didn’t like the life I had. One morning, I cried in the bathroom and there, I looked at myself in the mirror and I said to myself: you have two solutions: stay with him and accept that you will never be happy, or leave him. . I spent a few hours talking with my friends. Then I sat my girlfriend on the sofa and told her I wanted to stop there. I need to be sure and certain to make the right choice. I always find reasons not to leave him, but with Covid it’s impossible to hide the face. I realize that we are completely out of step and that we don’t want the same things. It was from that moment that I became a true adult. I finally accepted the idea that you have to live for yourself and not in relation to others. I never thought how much a breakup could ruin everything. It’s been almost two years and since then I’ve never been the same person. Without incarceration, the situation would probably have continued for several years and we would have moved or had a child. That was the best decision I could make. Confinement is very hard morally, but my new life is two thousand times better than before. Today, I value my solitude and my freedom. I can do what I want: the world is open to me ”.
Melanny: “It was a moment of total letting go”
I started a 6 month trip that started in Oman and would have ended in Armenia. But I found myself stuck in the first incarceration in Malaysia. During that time, I worked in the summer to earn money and travel the rest of the year. Then I rented an Airbnb with some travelers and that’s where the detention began, which lasted three months. It was a bit weird at first. I go round and round. I don’t have books, so I watched a lot of series and documentaries. Gradually, I began to ask myself: what would it look like after this incarceration? Then I retouched all my old photos; I also wrote a lot. It was a moment of total letting go. I listened to a lot of music. This lockdown is really positive for me. When I returned, I worked in catering to earn some money and also in an exhibition with some artists. I realized I wanted to work independently. The fact of circling in circles in this apartment of not being able to entertain myself very much, it emptied my head. I again focused my attention on myself by asking myself real questions. Eventually, I decided to start my own photo studio. Covid gave me real help. I had a sense of freedom that had grown in me since incarceration. I said to myself: “well, I will”. It’s important not to put barriers by telling yourself “it’s going to be complicated”. Of course it would be, but it would be such a shame not to. It’s important to follow your instincts and tell yourself: okay, we’ll do it.
Valentin: “This experience allowed me to dare to change paths, to see that I could adapt easily”
Before Covid, I worked in restaurants in Tours with my girlfriend. He went up to Paris and I followed him. I quickly found a job. But a month after starting, restaurants will have to close indefinitely. Without enough seniority, I found myself unemployed. I stayed there for almost 6 months, a very complicated time to find others. I used to think of switching jobs because catering is actually a complex sector with often difficult schedules and not very high incomes. However, I want to have a job that interacts with customers. I told myself why not to trade. After a lot of research, I finally got an answer from a DIY store, which ended up getting me. So I found myself a sales consultant in carpentry. It’s a field I don’t know but I’m someone who is very curious and quickly learns and adapts. The hardest part was losing my job and finding a way to live in Paris for only € 1150 per month. Living with 1150 € when you have a rent of over 800 €, with very little help from the State, really hasn’t been easy as a teenager. Covid has a negative side which is to live in the Paris region with a fraudulent salary. On the other hand, this experience allowed me to dare to change paths, to see that I could easily adapt and evolve very well in a sector other than catering: positive results therefore both in professional and personal.