I did not think I'd be sat here saying something so catastrophic would be affecting our lives right now, contemplating with every daily change how this is going to effect us.
But I am.
I'm a naturally anxious person, so when the news broke about China's Virus it wasn't long before I began to realise China's situation would soon become our reality too.
Videos started emerging online which I could only translate to those i'd seen in movies, apocalyptic scenes, scenes which involved military measures, restrictions and countless deaths.
For weeks we carried about our business and watched it all unfold. Our main focus became the travel industry, I have the flight radar app on my phone which shows all active flights across the globe other than the military and I wasn't seeing a huge decrease. Surely this meant the potential spread to other countries..
Of course it did, and within weeks Covid-19 had hit the UK. I've never been one to take the news so literally, I like to think rationally about everything I ingest, but there were no certain answers coming through, everything was speculation, even the Global health authorities underestimated this Virus' capabilities.
As we sat awaiting updates, news travelled about ski-trip school kids returning from an infected area of Italy, home to the UK.. home to a school 5 minutes down the road from my kid's schools. Siblings of those children attended my kids schools and that's when I started to wonder what measures I needed to be taking to protect my kids and my family.
Those of you following me on Social media and that have been reading this blog will know that my fiance and I are expecting our little girl in April, this places me in the vulnerable person category along with my eldest son who has asthma.
We took the children out of school, just before the government announced that It was closing them, I wish id taken them out sooner.
Some people started to panic, some carried on living life as normal and now we have a Nationwide Coronavirus pandemic here in the UK. With that status came new daily updates, rules, regulations and a whole lot of confusion.
We don't feel confused, we've been preparing to close our business, self isolate and endure a new way of life since before we declared a National state of emergency here in the UK, which has allowed us to live a fairly normal few weeks confined to our house, with the help of essential working family members delivering food.
We'd already bought our monthly additional needs, every month I stock up on shampoo, toothpaste, conditioners, ketchup and things that I don't want to have to think about with every weekly food shop, I've done that since I started coupon clipping as a teenager, fascinated by all those bargain mummy shoppers you used to see in the news that did whole 2 weekly food shops for a crazy 0.79p ! I'd buy lot's of things on offer that I know I'd always eventually need like washing powder, dishwasher tablets and ZoFlora.. We'd done one of those shops about 2 weeks before Coronavirus became an issue in the UK, so thankfully we didn't add to the panic buying spree that everyone else began in the midst of the news.
I've always loved baking too and would regularly test new menu ideas for Palm Bay at home, so yeast, bread flour and other ingredients that make you less reliant on shops and supermarkets were already here at home.
We closed our Business to discourage holiday-makers from travelling to Cornwall, all of our Property owners complied, which was greatly appreciated amongst our local community. When we made that decision there had been no financial support announcements for our Business made at all, it was a huge financial risk but we prepared mentally for the worst outcome, no help atall; But with the bonus of Maternity leave for both of us being made much more simple, it was worth it.
That's when shit got serious for us, suddenly both our purposes in life had switched.
We'd found a pretty good work/life balance with our fairly New Business, Bay Holiday Home Management and juggling the children as well as social time and date nights.
All of a sudden our routine disappeared and that was the hard part.
No more school runs, no more coffee's before heading into the office, no more Marketing to do, no more rushing routine after school. Robot mom was no more.
Instead we've had to start playing life by ear, along with the majority of other people.
We've got children to take care of and a baby to plan for, that's enough to be keeping us fairly busy at home but there's still moments of disbelief when we take a moment to think about just how much our life has changed since this news broke out.
Thankfully, we get quality time with the children now that it's less robotic, and coronavirus has given me the opportunity to explore fun tasks with my children that I never had time for before, life needed me to be robotic at times, life required me to have a certain level of structure in order for our life to tick along, life required my time, life limited my time.
And now, life has just stopped still.
Remember that TV programme, Bernards watch?
I feel like I'm in a never-ending episode of that programme couple with a little bit of The Truman show, because we've all started to be more transparent with our day to day lives now that they're all so similar by posting all sorts of 'normal day in iso' shit to our social platforms.
Right now, I feel like the life society wanted me to be a part of has been stripped from me, along with all those added strains, conformity and pressures. I guess I should be feeling slightly out of control.
But I feel strangely empowered at a time where most of my rights feel as though they've been stripped from me.
I'm actually my own boss again, and no for once I'm not referring to Business!
I'm the Boss of my own kids again, no one is influencing them but me, no shitty kids at school are influencing my kids, no teacher is undermining my parenting choices.. I've been raising kids for 10 whole years now, and for the first time ever, I feel like they're completely and utterly reliant on me, and me only.
There's no doctors surgery, no dentist, no teachers, no nipping to the shops, no face to face support and no normal communication with the outside world.
It really is bizarre, but strangely nice. Our recent trip to the U.S.A re-ignited an in built flame inside me that craves a more natural way of life, away form the rat race, a more feral existence.. I've always wanted to live rurally, away form people, on my own land, growing my own produce.. and in America whilst visiting my family, we got a taste of that. It was refreshing, so it does leave me wondering to what extent the UK will actually lock down because I know I crave a different way of life, no matter how temporary, I'm enjoying having to bake bread, having to consider making an allotment, having to consider how I'll take care of my children in 'survival like mode' in the event that services are restricted even more.
And then my mind wanders, back into the place of uncertainty surrounding our Pregnancy.
Thankfully my hippy type nature meant that I've already birthed at home, so I was completely content with the idea of another home water birth. Until just recently when we were forced to attend our local hospital maternity unit due to reduced movements where we were met with the Covid-19 new rules and regs, which meant that technically my partner wasn't allowed in. At a time were we feared for our little girls safety and well-being, the father wasn't allowed to experience that peace of mind or journey with me.
Thankfully for us, it was late at night and no other expectant parents were in the unit, so we were granted entry together and thankfully everything was fine, after being hooked up to the ECG Machine for about 45 minutes we were allowed to go home. Whilst we were there though the midwife updated us with her views on the new regulations she'd been made aware of which involved precautionary measures at home births and limited birthing partners in hospitals.
The precautionary measures she spoke of involved hazmat suited midwives at our home.
This, for me, was a big shock. When you're in your third trimester your mind is non-stop on your birth, your ideal birth plan and visualising what your birth would look like. As much as I understood how necessary those measures were for both our protection and those of Midwives, I couldn't help but begin to picture E.T. style films, strange suits and lots of plastic.. not what I had in mind for our tranquil, fairylight-lit home water birth.
This is something I'm still anxious about, I'm sure many expectant mothers and fathers across the UK feel similarly, and especially for those mothers that pictured their hospital birth with the father and another person for support that are now limited to just one choice.
There are new guidelines being issued daily, we're awaiting a new 6pm update today.
With just 12 days to go before our due date, for us I'm hopeful that the current guidelines won't change. For those of you reading this that fear being pregnant at a time like this, I've adopted this attitude:
We are the mothers that endured Pregnancy through Pandemic. A global pandemic that's taken lives and is making history and we are surviving.
Our basic motherly survival instincts are being challenged and we're winning that challenge.
We are the mothers who birthed during a Pandemic.
That in itself is powerful enough to see us through.