Updated: Oct 1, 2020
WHAT ON EARTH IS GOING ON?!?!
Is what I would ask myself had the weather not been consistent in any stretch of the imagination.
Oh, wait. It hasn’t.
One day it’s pouring down with rain, thunderstorms, a flood that could rival the journey of the ark, but the next day? The next day it’s like a Nigerian summer. The heat weighs down on you like… weights. You’re sluggish, hot and bothered, and you really just can’t be bloody bothered.
Excuse my French (I have a kid now so, you know, gotta watch that language!)
Anyway, there is something good about this, I guess.
For the first time in a very long time, I managed to get out of the house and socialise with other parents and babies!
#Covid19 has definitely kept me, like many others, housebound, too paranoid to even leave for a walk around the block. Weird, I know, but when I tell you this anxiety thing is a killer, I really mean it. But thanks to our lovely #NCT group (which I recommend EVERY parent-to-be to join ASAP) Joe, Theo and I finally had some much-needed face-to-face chat with our parent friends.
Let me paint the picture.
The year was 2020, mid-summer, amid a raging pandemic that had kept the whole world on lockdown. Other countries, of course, had since ended their lockdown restrictions in a bid to protect its citizens, and they succeded! But if you live in a country run by a government who cares about their sterling than they do the lives they govern, is it any wonder I #stayhome as long as I possibly can?
But back to the story. The sun is beating down on our skin, bronzing it by the second. In the park, friends throw frisbees to one another, lovers sit beside each other, kissing, holding hands, braiding each other's hair. And you realise that you just can't miss the opportunity to finally get out of the house and expose your child to some fresh air.
Now, at this point, Theo has left the house on very few occasions, so imagine his reaction when he sees the vast blue sky above him and smells the slight scent of meat roasting on a charcoal grill somewhere in the distance.
And this was the exact same face he'd retained throughout the afternoon as more voices he hadn't heard, and faces he hadn't seen for the best part of 6 months surrounded him.
My poor kid, who is normally as jovial as the Scottish sky is grey, was so confused that the only smiles he could muster were reserved for me and his dad. Even the other babies couldn't bring them out.
To be fair, ALL the babies, whilst fully aware of one another, showed zero interest in playing nicely.
Snatching toys, pulling hair, climbing over each other - as one would expect 6-8 months old to do.
But one thing I will take from this day out is how important it is to see people, even just for an afternoon. To get out of the house and enjoy the sunshine, or the rain, whichever you prefer. Clearly, Theo is more content at home with his parents given the current climate of our world, but it is SO important for me, as a stay-at-home mum, to keep my social lines open and not fear going outside.
I'll be honest, these past few months has really sent me for a tailspin. I've been on a steady decline, a downward spiral. I was consumed by a fear I know all too well. A fear that leaves me shaking at the very thought of opening my front door to the world beyond my living room, and this is the same thing I tell myself:
Please, go outside. For an hour, or for a minute. Break the energy that is taking over your body. Like the humidity of a wet summer's day, anxiety can weigh you down, make you hate the very thought of going outside. But I urge you, for yourself and those around you, do it.
I promise. It isn't as scary as you may think.
Have you ever dealt with anxious thoughts? Do those thoughts stop you from doing the very thing that you know will help you, like getting some fresh air or seeing familiar faces? If you have children, how have they taken to life in #quarantine? Most importantly, how have you?