My routine for lockdown

Victoria and her girls (and the dog)

They say that isolation has 3 stages. Excitement for being able to work from home in your PJ’s all day to setting into a routine and than realising that you crave human interaction again.

I believe most of us can experience all 3 of these in a matter of minutes. 

Isolation started for us on the 23rd March when the schools closed in Victoria.

This also being the date that we were meant to be returning from a 8 day cruise around Vanuatu. Dragging home two brutally disappointed daughters from Sydney we decided to start the ‘holidays’ early. 

I decided on Day 1 that isolation was not going to be a time to watch the full catalogue of Netflix and wallow.

We as a family were going to take this time to become closer, save money, eat better and finish all those to do lists hanging on the fridge.

Victoria tries to get everyone outside each day

I created a routine including daily family walks, at home workouts as my local gym went virtual, arts and crafts, midday movies and to pop up a quick Facebook post each night with a summary of what we got up to with photos to be able to look back on this time and how we were lucky enough to be safe from a pandemic.

It also gives me a sense that I am in control of some part of this life we now call normal. 

Today is our 45th Day in isolation.

We are 2 weeks into doing virtual dance lessons and homeschooling, I’m learning that I should have paid more attention in Year 3 Maths. The house is covered in paintings, drawings and random play dough that’s been squished in between the floor boards.

Dance lessons have gone online

We have managed to get out for at least 30 minutes a day for a walk/scoot, along the way taking the time to have little nature adventures, my youngest has learnt to skate and to write her name while my eldest is smashing out her Maths work and asking for more.

As glorious as this sounds, it hasn’t always been unicorns and rainbows.

Not everything is unicorns and rainbows

Two weeks into our happy little bubble the husband came home and informed me that postings have been put on hold/cancelled due to Covid-19, as a Defence family you get used to your life being dictated to you by a piece of paper however for the past 16 months we’ve had that many posting changes it’s been worse than a high school – on again – off again – teenager relationship.

So we pull the house off the market and start making all the phone calls that are involved in a removal. Three days later reality sinks in with our girls.

They were sick of everything and everyone. It was one of those days where even my neighbours cleaned their rooms and went to timeout.

When I saw the husband park in the drive way late that afternoon I got up, locked the bedroom door and told the girls to go away.

I messaged the husband and told him I’m in a timeout and he needed to do dinner and bedtime tonight.

I crawled into bed turned on Netflix and just cried….for a good hour.

I missed my own space, I missed my friends, my family, all the significant events and holidays that had been cancelled. We all deal with anxiety and stress in difference ways, that night I dealt with it with tears.

I missed my own space, I missed my friends, my family, all the significant events and holidays that had been cancelled.

Needless to say that my Facebook post that night said, ‘I locked myself in my bedroom and told the girls to go away, Today was not a good day’ #itsoktonotbeok 

The sun rose the next day and we started again, we went out for our walk, did some baking and wrote letters to our family. It was a good day, ending with little I love you mummy notes on my pillow.

Multi-tasking

We sit around and talk about the things we look forward to most, celebrating all those birthday parties and weddings that have been missed, the endless BBQ on the weekend where everyone is invited and then jumping on a plane so that the kid can hug their grandparents, aunts and uncles again. 

Victoria Hall

Victoria is the Vice President of the East Sale Family Group, ADF Partner, ex serving member and a part of the DFA family. Thanks for sharing your COVID story.

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Defence Families of Australia

National Advocacy body for current ADF families. We are all partners of current serving members.