What Mamas Actually Did During Lockdown

With a few weeks distance from the third lockdown I now feel able to share what a ‘typical day’ round ours looked like. Does this sound similar to yours?

A Wednesday in January…

This is my actual day yesterday. It didn’t include me doing any paid work – Wednesday is my ‘day off’. It didn’t include me doing any home schooling.

I do paid work the other four days of the week, including two 10 hours days. I feel like this is perhaps why ‘working mothers with children were 45 per cent more likely to have suffered mental health problems than the general population during the first two lockdowns, according to a recent Ipsos Mori poll.’

6.45am – Alarm goes of and Harrogate Papa starts his working day

7.15am – Small Boy arrives in my bed requesting breakfast

7.30am – Prepare the Small Boy’s breakfast

7.40am – Put first load of washing on (wonder how long I would have to be dead before someone thought to wash the towels)

7.45am – Have a shower, wash and dry my hair, get dressed (only time I’m on my own all day)

8.15am – Eat my breakfast, check in on friends and my elderly neighbor who I’m worried about over text

8.30am – Rally the Big Girls to make sure they’re up, dressed, eaten breakfast, cleaned their teeth and ready to start ‘school’ online.

8.45am – Tidy away breakfast pots, empty washing machine and put on dryer

9.00am – Put in second load of washing

9.10am – Persuade the Small Boy to get dressed and clean his teeth

9.30am – Help one of the Big Girls sort her sound on the laptop for a lesson

9.45am – Get set to take the Small Boy on a walk

10am – noon – Take the Small Boy for a snowy walk (which mainly involves me getting hit repeatedly in the back with a snowball, him complaining about cold hands and whether we can get a hot chocolate yet. We both enjoy the fresh air and chance to get out.)

12.30pm – Prepare lunch for five people

1pm – Eat lunch

1.15pm – Tidy away from lunch, put dishwasher on, fold dried towels, empty washing machine, put dryer on (again) hang laundry, put towels away

2pm – Entertain the Small Boy busy with an indoor activity – we baked a gingerbread cookie kit leftover from Christmas and iced the biscuits. (We both enjoy it).

3.30pm – Rally one of the Big Girls to get ready to leave the house for dentist appointment

3.45 – 4.30pm – Drive to and from dentist and chat to dentist, while Big Girl has treatment (I enjoyed other adult company and sitting down for 20 mins)

4.45pm – Go to Sainsbury’s. Pick up food for dinner, and a board game and wrapping paper for the Small Boy’s birthday at the weekend (bad timing!)

5.45pm – Unpack shopping, fold second load of dried laundry

6.15pm – Prepare dinner for five people

6.45pm – Eat dinner

7.15pm – Clear away from dinner, wash-up, unload and reload the dishwasher. Vacuum kitchen and hallway.

7.45pm – Amend online ‘big shop’ to include some actual meals

8pm – Harrogate Papa puts the Small Boy to bed

8pm – Clean the bathrooms

8.30pm – Put third load of washing on

8.45pm – Big Girls come down to watch something on TV together ‘as a family’ (nice)

9.00pm – Reply to friends texts messages, worry that they’re okay.

9.15pm – Watch half an hour of a sit-com together (spend most of the time on my phone checking the news)

9.45pm – The Big Girls go to bed – chat to Harrogate Papa for 10 minutes about his day

10pm – Watch the start of the News

10.20pm – Go to bed

Me and my shadow

There were two slots in the day that I could have spent ‘home-schooling’ but I actively chose not to. What the Small Boy actually needed right then was a Mama who was available to him,  when she could be! Who would spend time with him, who knew protecting his well-being and happiness comes above times tables and comprehension.

For the record some home-schooling did happen round ours during the lockdown. In a limited capacity, becuase work/life/lockdown!


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