Ten Things Rhys Has Taught Me About Lockdown
1. When I noticed Rhys subtracting numbers, I realised extensive Numberblocks watching is not necessarily a bad thing!
2. Even though he has no clue why we all have a one minute, social distancing party every Thursday night, he is always the first one out ready to shake his maracas to the hand-clap beat. If you don’t understand something, get involved and you may learn something while having a bit of fun at the same time.
3. The construction of a stair slide out of cardboard boxes and gaffa tape is loads of fun. However the waiting game for a broken leg or a little one to fall down the stairs is too stressful. It is not something I want to explain to the A&E nurse during an epidemic. Especially if I have a video to prove it
4. Rhys doesn’t eat apples anymore, it is now all about the oranges.
5. New rituals like touching the edges of doors or edges of chairs are a sign of stress. Although he is bubbly on the outside, smiling and happy, he can also hide elements of stress through changes he does not understand. We are all struggling with these changes even if we cannot express the stress ourselves.
6. Rhys knows that The Gruffalo starts with a G and Zog with a Z. It only took me 15 minutes to understand that my search was the reason for the current meltdown.
7. Because Rhys loves cake, I thought it would be the ultimate engagement activity. However I seem to find myself constantly baking with no sign of Rhys until Alexa announces to say they are ready. I need to work on not eating all the cake.
8. Only Percy is allowed on the Thomas & Friends Trackmaster train track. Any other added engine will be derailed immediately or placed under a couch cushion. There is no negotiation to this requirement!
9. Alexa will not count beyond one-hundred when requested. A response of “I’m sorry but that will take me a long time” is just not acceptable. I need at least more than 100 seconds of entertainment for Rhys at a time. She’s a total jobs worth!
10. It takes 28 days to form a habit. We have been in lockdown for more than 28 days. When things return to normal there will be some new habits we need to break but other habits which will have made us stronger, more resilient and better all round. Nothing is constant except for change. We will not go back to where we were, we will continue onto new norms, with new habits and new expectations. What we do now will determine how we move forward at the end of this. That may just be surviving and that is ok. Because learning how to survive in the most difficult of circumstances is a skill and strength you will retain forever.