When the new normal makes you evaluate life after lockdown
On the eve of entering week seven of working from home, the fear and sleepless nights have evaporated.
This is the new normal.
Lack of appetite brought on by emotional stress and ensuing weight loss (every cloud and all that) have been replaced by late-night snacking and fear of stepping on the scales.
The early days of struggling to work from the dining room table with my three-year-old daughter running around like a lunatic have settled into a slightly different routine.
Her protests of 'it's boring when you're working' continue, but she no longer demands to say 'hello' to everyone I interview over the phone. I am deeply saddened to admit Clara is now occupied by the television and her own activities for large portions of my working days.
The mummy guilt is huge and I wish – for her sake – there was some sort of end in sight. I'm sure many mums share my devastation over being unable to be an engaged parent during this time. But I also love my job. It is a difficult conflict and one I've not yet been able to resolve.
This whole situation may lead me to rethink my working routine when we are out the other side. On more than one occasion Clara has said 'once people stop getting sick I want you to pick me up from nursery every day'. She couldn't make herself much clearer than that. She will only be little once and clearly enjoys being with mummy (even if I am attached to my laptop three days a week).
You see, somehow – despite my fears of neglecting her at times – Clara is thriving. She is happy, her speech improves in leaps and bounds and she is becoming increasingly inventive at making mischief while my attention is elsewhere. In fact, we still haven't managed to find the garage keys Clara concealed a fortnight ago (which I suspect might have gone in the bin).
From a three-year-old's point of view at least, lockdown isn't so bad.
I realise this 'coronavirus log' has not talked about the pandemic, the losses, the numbers infected, the politics, the NHS and the human cost. And there is a reason. I am concerned about all the above, but realised early on that spending my spare time consuming news reports was creating anxiety and taking my attention away from what really matters: my family and loved ones.
Now, I dip into the national and international news daily and then concentrate on making home as content and secure as it can be. And we just take it one day at a time.
High point: My new Fitbit being delivered yesterday, Now, let's see just how much activity I am NOT doing during lockdown.
Low point: Missing coffee. I'd do pretty much anything for a decent caramel latte.