A new reality?

Empty chairs by the sea
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When I started this blog just over a week ago, as we entered into a Covid-19 induced lockdown in Spain, we were in the minority. Now, almost the whole world is in some form of lockdown. It’s staggering. How quickly things have changed. And how quickly this virus is spreading. “Don’t say I didn’t warn you”, says someone, somewhere.

I guess I started the blog to keep a record of our experiences in lockdown, and to hopefully provide some entertainment to people who might think it is an absurd situation. But it’s our new reality, across the globe. Social distancing has become a term. Lockdown is part of the common vernacular. We’re (almost) all in this together.

There is no escaping the constant Covid-19 updates. It’s the dominant topic of conversation in any (virtual) social interaction. It’s a harrowing situation. And not just in terms of the physical effect on affected people’s lives. It has as good as shut down international travel, which means that the world economy has almost ground to a halt; tourism has been annihilated. Millions of people have lost their jobs. Small businesses are disintegrating. And it’s all happened so quickly.

The first cases to arrive in Europe were towards the end of January.  There was slow growth to start with, but by about a month later it was starting to spread much faster. And then in the last 2 weeks, it has just shot right up. 

We’re on day 9 of our lockdown. Littlest Harvey was super disappointed last night when I told her that she wouldn’t be going to school today. And she has found things a bit more tricky today – saying ‘no’ a lot and really not wanting to get involved in any school work or our PE class. But when I got the Duplo out, she was very happy. When asked what her favourite activity from today was, she first answered ‘TV’, but then changed her answer to ‘Cleaning the fireplace’!

So overall, we’re in a good rhythm. Whilst they’re not expressing it, I think the children would be happier if we could go out and about, but they are very good at making the most of what they have. We get outside as much can, and don’t worry about mess inside the house (most of the time). I do like to have a clean house at least once a week though… so over the weekend everything was put back in it’s place (for oh-so temporary a time) whilst we cleaned.

Having our work routine also helps – it’s time for us to disconnect from what’s going on, and from the demands of parenting, for a while. 

And spending so much time together is really lovely. Life can get a bit full-on during crazy work/school normality, that we can forget what really matters. Yesterday it was raining, with the sun shining at the same time so we went on a rainbow hunt and we found one! The children were so excited. Little discoveries like that remind me that it’s often the simple things that bring the most joy.

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, anxious, frustrated or any other negative emotion related to this crazy situation, remember that it will pass and you will get through it. One day at a time. Be kind to yourself, take time to do things which you might not normally have time for. And enjoy the small things.

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