In my last blog, I talked about things my 3 kids missed the most during lockdown. It feels so surreal as I write this blog, to know that the restrictions have eased and my kids are back at school full time - so much has changed in such a short amount of time!
During lockdown, I had a lot of time to reflect and practice gratitude towards everything we are fortunate to have. Although having my kids around 24/7 was a challenge (I’ve never needed so much coffee and wine in my life!!), I feel quite emotional when I think about all the things we GOT to do! It’s so strange to think that when our freedom was practically restricted, we, as a family, did so much more to bond closer together.
We tried lots of different types of activities and interestingly, a few really stuck! Here are the positive habits and activities we are continuing to do:
- Bike riding as a family (after only having our first family ride a few months ago!)
- Day trips or short road trips on the weekend! The picture of my kids and I was taken at Palm Beach, about an hour away from Sydney.
- Bushwalking in our local area - the end of our street has an amazing bush walk but it took us 5 years and quarantine to decide to explore it!
- My 3 kids are more involved in household chores and they are empowered to have “adult” responsibilities such as starting the laundry, hanging it, setting the dinner table, cleaning up afterwards and carefully loading the dishwasher. I finally had the time to show them and calmly explain how to do it!
- Playing card games as a family whilst the kids drink juice and the parents drink wine!
- Without the daily commute, we were eating earlier and getting to bed earlier - a massive win.
We were also really impressed with the kids - when I look back at my childhood, I remember rolling my eyes or letting out a big sigh when my parents would get me to do chores around the house. I was almost afraid that my kids would do the same but surprisingly they were happy to take onboard new responsibilities!
When I asked them how they felt about house chores, each child had a different answer:
- “It feels good to help and it makes me happy when you say thank you”
- “I feel like an adult”
- “I like doing something different and being good at it too”
I think through bonding and improving our communication (both ways), we were able to show respect and gratitude individually which really empowered them.
My husband and I truly learned so many things in the last 2 months during lockdown. Looking back we appreciate all the precious memories we were able to create. But we also appreciate and acknowledge the struggles, the worries, the stress and the anxiety! Without them, we wouldn’t have explored new ways to connect with the kids and strengthen our bond.
We faced a lot of challenges and we’re going through yet another phase of adjustment. It’s not easy, we know, and we hope that if you’re reading this, you know that things will get better!