Friday, 8 May 2020

Back to normal and role reversals

So on the 1st of May South Africa entered Level 4 of our 5 stage Covid – 19 lockdown period, whether it stays this way remains to be seen seeing as Cape Town (where I stay) is now the noted epicenter of the outbreak -I will refrain from jumping for joy just yet.

With level 4 came some pretty exciting things like…. Being able to exercise between the hours of 6am and 9am on a daily basis, I cannot tell you how amazing it was on May 1st to take a walk outside with my kids; their first time out of the house and garden for 5 weeks and to hear all the doggies barking excitedly as their owners took them out for the first time in too long, its cruel to be honest I really had a problem with the not walking your dog thing, animals don’t understand and it isn’t fair, my neighbor has two very large dogs and our duplexes are not big I felt so terrible sorry for them when I saw them gazing longingly out the window… I would also like to point out that at 6am it is still dark, Winter is coming so it will only get darker and colder so it’s almost impossible to take the kids out before 7am and if you work that just isn’t possible, the number of people out at the same time is also a bit ridiculous I personally think that giving a morning and afternoon time slot would have been better all around… but I digress.

You can now buy clothes but some stores have prohibited the sale of underwear, you could buy toys on level 5 but it now considered non essential in level 4, you can also buy make up and the spaza shops are open but nail techs and hairdressers are still banned.

With level 4 also came the long awaited (for me) cigarette ban lift… oh wait no they banned it again; I am a smoker and I was beyond livid, during this time it is the only reprieve and slip of sanity I have had in the midst of home-schooling the kids and everything else; the reasoning's are flawed and every time I get into it I just go off the deep end of anger so let's move on.

With level 4 also came a list of industries that were allowed to return to work, given the state of our economy this is great and I was quite excited when I saw that my industry was one of those allowed to venture back into the ‘normal’ world… however with 3 kids at home and a hubby also faced with a return to work I have to be honest I was panicking, of course the government can sing its song and tell employers to be kind and to take these things into consideration but not everyone can do their job from home and with no money coming in more and more people are facing pay cuts and company shutdowns every day.

Honestly the prospect of ending up on the street or not being able to feed my family or even get my son his meds is scarier to me than the possibility of catching the virus.

So fast forward to this week and I returned to work on a rotational schedule to accommodate the fact that I still have kids at home (I am very lucky) and then my hubby got told that he is going to be home until much… much later this year and thus I know have a house-husband… yay me right!?

I think it hit my hubby pretty hard at first, he wants to be back at work he is craving some normalcy and the kids are going bonkers at home so I can’t blame him, it’s ironic really to see so many introverted people suddenly craving or developing a need to run free amongst the living so to speak, it’s been an emotional roller coaster ride and I think everyone I know has had at least one meltdown over the past few weeks.

Now that my hubby is home I am able to work more which is great but it is strange and truth be told I do miss having the time with the kids although mentally I think I am a much happier parent- last night I came home exhausted took a shower and then plomped onto the bed to watch Peter Rabbit with my youngest; he was so happy and then I chased my other two around for loves… it’s good to breathe, its good to be the parent I want to be instead of the frustrated anxious mess that I have been at times over the past 6 weeks- I take my hat off to stay at home moms I really do.

School wise we are doing well, our curriculum is built for home-schooling so it has been easy to navigate and use it at home and we are practically done with the second term work the kids are either doing revision or finishing up a subject or two so I am really happy we pushed a little harder in the beginning as we can now relax the slacks a bit and there is less pressure on hubby while I am at work.

I start my day off with a 6am walk/run, get ready for the day, prep dinner and set out the school work, tidy up a bit and get breakfast done if the kids are up and off I go to work only to barrel through the door exhausted at 6pm take a shower eat dinner and eventually fall into bed, I tell you during lock down I was up until 2am most night and now I am barely making 11/12 o clock but it feels good and I am beyond grateful that we are one of the lucky families with jobs to go back to, a roof over our heads and food on the table, it is a new kind of normal, a strange space of in-between but we will get there.

I hope everyone is safe and healthy


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