Dare I say I’ve Enjoyed It? One Single Mum’s View of Lockdown
By Emma Peries, Digital Mother
When I was asked to write this blog, I really wondered what angle I would take, I’ve read a few from single parents about how lockdown has been brutal and how difficult it has been and thought maybe that’s what I should say..…but dare I say I’ve actually enjoyed it?
Don’t get me wrong, It’s been tough at times and I’ve had to make some difficult decisions. I did try and do it all when lockdown first hit, continuing to work for 25 hours a week, home schooling my 2 girls, arranging a 6th birthday just 4 days in, cooking, cleaning, and as you know the list goes on, but realistically I had to face it that by the Easter holidays only 2 weeks in, I was broken and something needed to change.
At that time, I lost a couple of clients as their business was affected by coronavirus, a blow and a huge worry financially but I reframed it as a blessing in disguise, as it gave me some much-needed extra time. Going through a divorce has made me realise my strengths and resilience in tough times, that I will and can weather the storm. I took the decision then, not to look to replace those clients but to prioritise the girls and my mental health.
I wonder if coming out of a toxic relationship, realising just how unhappy you had been and having counselling makes me look at life a little differently. Throughout lockdown I just keep thinking I feel so lucky:
Lucky that I am on my own, there’s no-one to argue with and I can make my own decisions. Lucky that I have a house with a garden.
Lucky that my children and I are well and that we’re together.
After so many weeks at home, I feel like I have got to know my girls again and if possible, we’ve become even closer. Some school work has been done, but we’ve also been enjoying gardening (we have a crop of sweetcorn and carrots doing really well!) and bike rides together.
I’m a co-parent with the girls Dad, he has continued to work through the lockdown, but has increased his time with them too. I now get a couple of days a week on my own. Initially I thought that will be the days I use to work, and it is – but I quickly realised that this is also the time I need to clean the house, go shopping and try and have some downtime.
The thing about being a single parent for me is everything takes so much longer, nothing extra gets done when you’re with the kids – as it’s all on you. Breakfast, home learning, lunch, playtime, dinner, bath, bed, there’s just no let up, it’s all or nothing. You can’t just leave the house for a walk, or pop to the shops because you’ve run out of milk, everyone stays or everyone goes.
All in all, it’s been tough & exhausting, I’ve had to put my business growth on hold and just keep it ticking along, but as a single mum I get the luxury of having some head space and my girls get a change of scene. So I am going to be brave, and put it out there that I really have quite enjoyed lockdown life.
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