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Challenging times

In these challenging times, I wanted to think about what I’m grateful for this week – things I’ve taken for granted in the past.

1) I am with my children. To be apart from them during this would be horrific. That’s not to say we are the Waltons and we all get on each others’ nerves at times but we are together and I’m thankful for that.

2) The sun shining last week was an absolute blessing as being able to play outside in the garden made the world of difference to the children. And me!

3) My children make me laugh every day whether it is my toddler mishearing my eldest child say “really” and thinking he said “willy” or my daughter talking through the first 10 minutes of Joe Wicks PE class to ask why he had long hair, was he a boy or a girl, if he is a boy, why has he got long hair but “remember mummy, boys can marry boys and girls can marry girls” or my daughter putting make up on both her brothers, think Boy George circa 1982.

4) Due to technology I can keep in contact with my parents and friends. WhatsApp is great.

5) My daughter’s dress sense inspires me every day. From Power Ranger costume to glittery dress, headscarf and sunglasses to Snowman dress. It’s all good as we’re not going anywhere. I may join her by the end of this.

6) We have food and necessities and I am yet to have to use a Pot Noodle lid as toilet roll.

7) Kids take delight in the simplest of things, painting a rainbow, finding a ladybird in the garden, looking at old photos of themselves.

8) I’m working. Even harder than I was before due to the ever-changing landscape of the current situation given my role in communications and being busy and employed is good.

9) No school run!

10) Zoom – a video conferencing app I was not previously aware of which makes work meetings a lot easier.

Things I’ve noticed:

1) My kids can eat. And eat. And eat!! Quite possibly rivalling the amounts required of a body builder.

2) My kids are playing together in ways they have never done before. Somehow, the age difference between them all, not that it is much, but is suddenly irrelevant and I even heard my daughter say that her and her brothers were best friends “but just while this coronavirus thing is going on”.

3) The kids have adapted to home schooling. I’ve not gone strict, strict just yet but if I’d said two months ago that the children would be following my instructions for maths and doing spellings for me, I would have been flabbergasted.

4) Finding something on tv to suit an 8,6 and 2 year old simultaneously is, despite the many various channels and Netflix, rarer than rocking horse excrement.

5) My evening meal has become the highlight of my day!

Things I wish I’d done before this lockdown:

1) Got the toddler’s hair cut. He is quickly approaching ‘The Mullet’.

2) Turned my garage into a soft play centre.

3) Had my daughter’s 6th birthday party early so she didn’t miss out. Likely to be the same for my youngest this month. And my eldest in July!

4) Had a backlog of essentials such as baby wipes, toilet roll, chopped tomatoes and prosecco prior to the stockpiling scenario as I don’t agree with grabbing all you can in the current climate.

5) Had a party with all my nearest and dearest, so raucous that we would appreciate the lockdown period to recover.

I’ve also taken faith in people being nice to each other, sending messages of support, asking neighbours if they need shopping, shouting ‘stay safe’ when you applaud the NHS on a Thursday night. Long may this kindness continue. As the saying goes: “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.”

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