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Parenting In The Midst of A Pandemic

In December, when I was flying back to the States, I was pretty terrified of what lay ahead. My son would be doing preschool just a couple of hours a day. Which meant that he would still be home with me all day. My daughter, who was turning a little more than six months old, wouldn’t be mobile anymore. Like any baby, she wanted to explore.

Come March, there is a pandemic declared. I often wonder about how different lives are for other people now because of the stay-at-home orders. How do lovers manage to keep the flame alive? How do people, who were still climbing their way towards love, manage to keep things going? How do sports freaks keep it going? How do teenagers manage to live undercover under their parents’ noses? How do, people like me, manage to live with little kids who have a ton of energy?  

Okay, I do get it that the world is going through some serious stuff right now which I won’t go into detail. You already know a lot about it. Way more than needed. Are you also like me, who promises not to read the news, and ends up scrolling through every news item?

Coming to the point, I realized that, unlike most other people, my life hasn’t changed in the big way. That’s because I am at that stage where I am tending to little kids. When you’re at that stage, your life is usually lived in isolation with a partly social life. Now, the ‘social life’ part is practically zero. The part that kept me sane on most days.

So, I wasn’t terrified when the pandemic forced me to live with my kids home. Because, I also got the husband as well, like a free discount when you pay for something expensive. Well, having the husband home is also like having another kid. But the good thing is, you also are allowed to become a kid. So, it works both ways as long as you take turns. But the rule remains the same – around kids, only the kids are allowed to be kids.

I wasn’t terrified because I didn’t know what I was signing up for. Also, I knew that most of the world was going to stay indoors, so it’s not just me. To start off, I decided I was going to take it one day at a time. I wouldn’t be hard on myself or the kids. That’s not true. I haven’t cooked so many meals in my entire life. But I do like to imagine that culinary cooks out there must be having fun. Isn’t everybody posting pictures about beautiful dishes on their page?

Sometimes, I wonder if the pandemic had hit when I was in college or at work or at school or the time, when I’d just gotten married. Of course, that’s a silly thought. Because, there isn’t a right time given the account of how worse things are turning around. But I do see, how people are making the time to do things they never found time for.

My day usually starts off with waking up with my kids because they are usually up before me. That way, I know that I have slept well. Score one. Ready to face my day, inside my four-roomed apartment with two kids, who are hungry every two hours or want to play or want to poop or want to sleep or want to cry or want to snuggle or simply, want to yell the word ‘mummy’.

We try to be courteous to the man, who is now working from home. We try really hard. Apparently, he has taken our space so he’s gotta be good with us. But we try to be on our best behavior most times. But there are times, we really want his attention in the midst of his really important phone call which is practically all day. But that’s okay, we are respectful to all those mommies and daddies who work from home. Definitely not easy with lot of background noise!

I don’t really remember the dates or days these days unless I glance at the calendar. Nothing in particular. Because what I am really concerned about is filling our bellies so we can push the hours until when we can fill our bellies again.

We do a lot of music and games and activities. And then, we try to stay away from each other for a while. Pah, as if that’s possible without bumping into each other.

I wonder what our social skills will be like in a few weeks. I wonder how we all are going to turn out at the other end. With a lot of belly weight, I suppose!


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