Over the past few weeks, children across England and Wales returned to school after a long lockdown period of homeschooling. Here are a few things that have happened since then that I didn’t anticipate – can you relate?
It Wasn’t as Bad as I Thought it Would be
I dreaded the schools returning, and I had building anxiety for weeks in the lead up to the actual event. After five months of shielding, we were taking time to adjust to the new normal, and I was worried about the returning of schools. For the five months prior to this point, I had been in full control and was able to do everything I could to keep us safe. Suddenly I was expected to send the second-youngest member of our household out on his own. Putting his care into the hands of someone else for eight hours a day. That felt all in all a little more than overwhelming.
Despite my worries and anxieties over the school returning it as nowhere near as bad as I expected it to be. In fact, I would go as far as saying that I am enjoying the return. I thrive on structure and routine, and I worry a whole lot less about my boy now he is back where he belongs.
Lockdown Impacted my Son More than I had Realised.
Lockdown did quite the number on all of us as a family. We didn’t leave the house for three months and then once we were allowed out to exercise, it wasn’t ever more than a mile away from the house. We were, for a period shut off entirely from the physical world. Our usual routines wholly demolished and that had more of a mental impact than I could really ever compute. The evidence of how this had changed Henry was clear when after just one day from school, his personality came flooding back. He had become much more reserved and within his own shell but after that first day he was chatting away endlessly. He was the happy, carefree boy I thought I had lost once again.
It Was Exhausting
I love the routine and structure that the school day brings, but I had honestly forgotten how exhausting the whole thing is. Full school days after such a long period off was, of course, going to be tiresome for a 9-year-old but I had no idea how tired I was going to be by the end of the week too! I thought I would have days of productivity, but I spent most of the time nursing a coffee and propping my eyelids open!
We all Got Sick
Of course, it makes complete sense when you think about it. For the past six months, we have spent the entire time sanitising ourselves – locked away from germs and washing our hands so much we get contact dermatitis! Suddenly our immune systems are bombarded with everyone else’s germs, and it goes into complete lockdown (no pun intended!), and we end up sick as a result.
Henry and I both started with cold symptoms, but we soon developed a continuous cough which we all know is also a symptom of the dreaded CV so of course we did the right thing and had a test. Luckily, we both had negative results, and even though I am still somewhat struck down with it after two weeks, we are finally on the mend!
Cannot Refuse To Follow Simple Rules.
Schools are really trying their best to keep everything safe and running smoothly. From the staggered start and finish times to clear markings on the floor for social distancing. We have also been asked to wear masks on the school grounds. Do I particularly like these rules? No, of course not but I conform because it’s about keeping everyone safe. Sadly, most of the parents are not following the rules. There is very limited social distancing, and by very limited, I mostly mean non-existent. This, of course, is difficult and wouldn’t be as bad if parents were wearing masks which some are but there is still a number who are not. There’s the few that “forgot” but there are also just some point-blank refusing. Could some of these people be exempt? Absolutely – however many are openly bragging at the gates about the fact they will not wear a mask, so I think it’s doubtful. It’s sad that we all can’t just come together as a community to do our bit to help keep the school open for our children.
How have the first few weeks been back at school for you and your kids?
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Ahh! That first week back at school was exhausting! It’s still taking some getting used to and we’re living for the weekend lie in but we’re getting there.
I don’t do the school run anymore but I have heard about the non social distancing at the local primary school by the parents and those who refuse to wear a mask. Shocking x
I’m with you there we are still getting used to it. That’s one thing I loved about lockdown – the easy mornings. It seems so much more stressful and hectic now! Yeah I’ve heard the same at most schools sadly. There’s only so much the school can do at some point the parents have to also step up and do their bit x