Queer Kiwis in Self-Isolation: Jill Stevens

Jill Stevens gets her HouseParty on!

Christchurch Pride Chairperson Jill Stevens is isolating with her two teenage boys; cooking, dressing as a tiger and planning post-lockdown ChCh Pride Event – ‘We’re Back Bitches!’

Tell us about your Level 4 Lockdown – where are you? Who’s in your bubble? And what are you doing to keep your mental health in check?
I’m currently still in my bubble at home with my two teenage boys. We have been making sure we get out of bed and shower and start the day by talking over what we will do on the day.

What are your top tips for express readers who are struggling with self-isolation?
Definitely reach out to friends via social media, take some time to message at least two people you haven’t caught up with for a while because you’re always too busy working.

What is the most positive aspect of self-isolation you’ve experienced so far?
Self-satisfaction.
Doing the garden (which I hate) however the satisfaction of it looking amazing, way-outweighs the dirty hands and scratches from the triffids.
Also having online catch-ups, online quiz nights, team dress-ups – are all super fun and help with my mental health – seeing my friends having a giggle. So far I think I have dressed as a princess and a tiger – it’s amazing what costumes you can chuck together from around the house.

What plans do you have between now and day 28 of lockdown?
Doing my best to keep a positive attitude, keep being active, spring cleaning the house, and cook a lot. Lucky I have two teenage boys that always seem to be snacking.

What are you missing most about ‘normal life’?
Friends! Hugs! Kisses! And cocktails that I don’t have to make myself.

What will be the first thing that you can’t wait to do when regular life resumes?
Definitely organise a huge Christchurch Pride event and FriGay drinks! Go back to work, see all my friends, take a road trip… the list is long!

Moving forward is there anything you think you will change about your life following self-isolation?
Yes, I think we need to be more understanding of people, the hardship and strains on people both financially and emotionally. Coming out of lockdown is going to be hard, so I am going to try to be positive and help people that may be struggling.

Is there a closing message you would like to share with our gorgeous LGBTI+ community?
I’m super sorry we had to postpone so many Pride events in Christchurch, I know it was the right thing to do. Rest assured myself and the team will do our best to bring joy back and reconnect our Rainbow community, starting with our next event: Christchurch Pride Bitches We’re Back – as soon as it’s safe enough to do so.
He aha te mea nui o te ao. He tāngata, he tāngata, he tāngata – Te Pou What is the most important thing in the world? It is people, it is people, it is people.