The (surprising) things I’ve enjoyed during isolation

 OPINION – Danielle Galvin

Firstly, let me preface this by saying, I have not found isolation easy at all times.

Like many parents, I’ve had my moments.

For the parents who are undertaking remote learning and full time work, theirs is an impossible task and I take my hat off to you.

But if my children ask me about what it was like to live through this time when they are older, I’ll tell them at times, I had nothing left to give.

I’ll tell them I missed my village desperately, and longed for some adult connection with our family and friends.

How much I would give to have a coffee with a friend again, or visit their grandmother.

I will also tell them I will look back on these days and cherish some of the precious time we had together, the silver lining I didn’t expect…

  • I have never been so creative in my life. I am not a visual, artistic person. AT ALL. I still draw stick figures. But each day I have to find my 4-year-old a new activity and I have loved the challenge. It’s not enough to say “let’s paint” or pop a bit of play dough in front of her. She needs a stimulating activity with a goal or a task in mind. Here’s some of what we’ve done: baked salt dough, made unicorns out of egg cartons, painted wooden stick people, painted leaves and made our own trees, painted off cuts of wood with rainbows, made dream catchers out of paper plates, painted Easter eggs, done so much chalk out on the footpath, made bubble paint, made rainbow foam and more. She is always up for something new and it has been lovely to do with her.
  • I have discovered my love of walking again, and discovered walking tracks and trails in our neighbourhood. After our second child, who promptly decided he hated the pram, I haven’t walked much. With my first I pounded the pavement daily and loved the release. She slept, I walked. But with the second I haven’t. I’m enjoying the fact that I’ve been forced to get out each day for a walk nearby – and it’s part of our routine. We walk, the three of us, each day around the same time without fail. Rain, hail or shine. It will be something I miss.
  • While like many, this is somewhat of an anxious time, I’ve enjoyed slowing down. I like that I’m not rushing to be somewhere everyday. In a normal day, I’m ten minutes behind everywhere I go. I’m always chasing my tail, halfway through an email, forgetting to buy nappies and milk at the shops. These days, I’m shopping only when absolutely necessary (not every day like I normally would) and I am not furiously hurrying the children to eat their breakfast because we’re late somewhere. Soon life will return to this hectic chaos, so slowing down, for now, has been a nice lesson.