Pandemic Life

So 2020 hasn’t exactly been roses for the whole world… Coronavirus (or COVID-19) has been a huge worldwide issue and while I don’t want to go into specifics and the politics, I felt like this deserved a blog mention at least, right?

It’s mid April and we’ve already been self isolating for the last 5 weeks or so now, here in our household. The kids and I came down with colds in early March so we were all home when the sh*t started hitting the fan in Sydney and then we just decided to keep them home. Then the following week, the government finally said it was okay to keep them home (if we had no medical reason, its deemed unjustified and parents get in trouble for it).

ANYWAY, online schooling for the boys has been pretty good – a learning curve for everyone but I’m pretty happy with their work at home. I can see them trying to adjust to being home AND doing school work – and away from their school, teachers, friends and routine is pretty strange. Jovie is harder to home school properly (I’ve always said that teachers do amazing work and I can’t replicate that here at home – all true!), but I’ve been trying to get her into listening to book reads with us and getting out the instruments to play along with The Wiggles songs I have on repeat. Trying to ‘teach’ 3 kids at different education levels (currently yr 7, yr 5 special education and yr 1) is a challenge for sure, but I’m grateful I get to be home with my babies.

Regan is still working – he’s an essential worker as he works at the local hospital. He’s changed departments due to COVID-19 and is more hands on within the frontline now, which makes me proud of him and excited for him – he’s wanted to go into nursing for a while now, and this is giving him some firsthand experience.

Toilet paper hoarding is starting to slow down. Yes, you heard me, future Tracey – there has been a real problem with people buying up ALL THE TOILET PAPER for the last 6 weeks also. (Also, the pasta, hand sanitiser, soap, canned goods, paper towels, panadol, chalk, storage containers — I’ve even had trouble finding one of Jovie’s epilepsy medications which makes me so mad/sad).

Because of Jovie’s diagnosis, I am lucky enough to be able to use the Community Hour at our local supermarkets M, W and F’s to do a quiet shop (they close it off for the elderly and people with concession cards) and I am so grateful for that. I have been to the shop at the usual opening time and the line for the checkouts was crazy.

Wearing masks and disposable gloves is becoming the norm.

At this point, the kids have not left the house in 5 weeks (except for walks in our neighbourhood). I’m only going grocery shopping once or twice a week for fresh fruit & veg and bread. We’re able to have doctor’s appointments via phone/video call but we haven’t had to do that yet. I’m trying to book the kids and I in for flu shots, but they are all out of stock.

I am working hard in keeping busy AND rested – I’ve been enjoying sewing masks, I’m learning AUSLAN (Australian sign language), I’m using Illustrator alot more (GIPHY!!), and I want to learn how to animate. We’ve been creating little pictures for a local #gratitudewalk in our neighbourhood.

We’ve already had Lily’s 1st birthday, Gavin’s birthday, my MIL Sharon’s birthday and my Dad’s birthday via video chat.

They think we will need to keep isolated for another 4 weeks at least – which is fine by me. My biggest fear is that Jovie gets the virus (she was picking up constant colds from about May to December last year) and her body can’t handle it. I fear that her seizures don’t settle down (she is currently dropping at least 15 times a day plus longer seizures every now and then – we are trialing new meds that don’t seem to work right now). I fear that the boys develop anxiety as a side effect of the social aspects of self isolating. (I feel like they have better immune systems than Jovie, so maybe they have a better chance?).

Back in February, I had a chest xray for shortness of breath. I had my third iron infusion and I had the opportunity to do some cool things that pushed me out of my comfort zone. So I’m grateful for those things happening when they did. I’m grateful for the home we’ve created where we all feel safe and loved.

I’m grateful for the food on our table and the experiences we’ve had in the past, that gave us this resilience and mindfulness. I’m grateful for our health.

I am thinking of everyone around the world who might not be so lucky.

These are crazy strange times.

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