Life in Lockdown Bournemouth
Caption: Sarah and Ricky with baby Felix
Caption: Sarah and Ricky with baby Felix
So… here we are.
My husband, myself and our 7-month-old son, in lockdown.
The way our little family unit works goes a little like this: my husband works 9-5 Monday to Friday. During these hours I take my son to all manner of baby groups for his development but mostly my own sanity. I buzz through these groups, housework and cooking meals powered by coffee shop mochas. At the weekends we spend time with friends in nature, we bicker about who is most deserving of a lie in or night out. Sundays is swimming at 9am which is always followed by scrambled eggs and later a good Sunday roast around the table always with family and friends. The weekends disappear in a blur before its back to the weekly tasks.
All of a sudden, the world is hit by a global crisis, a crisis that is likely to change the world forever.
All the emotions instantly stirred in me. Fear washed over me as one morning my son woke coughing with a temperature of 38.9. This led to a bizarre trip to our GP who snuck us through the surgery’s back door to a sealed room where she examined him in full PPE. We were advised to go home and isolate immediately, of course there were no tests or any diagnosis. Anxiety hit as fast as the fear, engulfing me with worry about my marriage and how or if we could tolerate so much time together with a baby. And there was the ever grinding emotion of guilt, the guilt I have for being a nurse on maternity leave when we are needed the most.
The days rolled by and my husband was eventually furloughed adding a new dimension to lockdown, the first few weeks he was in his office 9 – 5 so it gave us space to get on with our days. As we began to spend the days in each other’s space we began to bicker over practically nothing at all but this time for me the bickering was different. Instead of biting back without fully engaging my brain I found myself actively listening and trying to understand how we had got to the bickering to enable it to not start. I’ve become more aware of myself.
A reoccurring question soon became apparent ‘Isn’t lockdown hard with a baby?’ The answer… a simple ‘No’. It’s a true blessing for us as new parents to suddenly have all the time to spend watching him learn and grow. Now both of us can put in our all and focus fully on his development. We can now both read books, explore the garden and embrace messy play, I no longer have to just show my husband pictures and he no longer has to wish he was there. Our son is happy and I’m watching their bond grow before my very eyes, a bond that may have not blossomed so wholly if it wasn’t for this virus.
As a new mum all you wish for is a hot cup of tea and maybe some quiet to read from time to time. Well now, this new mama is on her third book of this lockdown! Amongst many other on going achievements like making a patchwork quilt, starting my veg patch, baking, oh and my cups of tea are always hot.
We spend our days listening, singing and dancing to Radio 6, we eat all of our meals together and they’re all cooked from scratch. We play in the garden and BBQ, we chat to our neighbours spending time getting to know one another, we have less screen time and read more. We have ‘zoom’ pub quizzes with friends and work colleagues, we even have an online baby sensory group.
The world outside is eerie, the death toll creeps higher daily and whilst we constantly hope for the safety of our nearest and dearest our little home and family are thriving. Gone are the negative emotions of fear and anxiety (the guilt always remains) and in place is joy and gratitude. We’ve slowed down and we appreciate the little things more, all we can do is enjoy this time, as damaging as this situation can feel, ourselves and the earth will never have this time to heal again.
Sarah’s report is the third from our series ‘Life in Lockdown’ featuring lockdown stories from people in Dorset and across the globe. ‘Life in Lockdown’ aims to shine a light on how people’s lives have been affected by lockdown and how they are surviving. They will share their experiences and tips for living in lockdown. We will be publishing the reports online over the next couple of weeks and in the upcoming May 4Dorset magazine. If you have a lockdown story you would like to share please get in touch as we would love to hear from you.
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