We are suddenly coming out of Dutch Covid restrictions….but it’s getting a bit confusing as no one seems to know what really is going on anymore. When we can send our kids to school, when we can’t… should we probably still avoid licking trolleys and door handles? Is public urination OK now?

My friend rang the Dutch Covid helpline the other day, to find out how long her boy had to stay in quarantine for. She ended up reading the information from the website to the guy on the phone, who eventually conceded that it’d be better if she just followed that advice. 

Deep breaths and a jiggy little dance.

I’m fine,
It’s fine,
This is fine. 

The Dutch Government have made one thing clear though:
“We may be coming out of quarantine rules, but you still have to wash your hands”’

My lock down mindset stalls, when I contemplate a full and eventful life again.
What was that? I am struggling to remember.
What is this social stuff I read about?
Is it fun? Do I like it?
Can I wear my sweatpants to it?
Can I finally go back to work?

I put on makeup one day and the kids were visibly unhinged.
‘You look like a cartoon’, shrieked the 6 year old.
‘No you don’t’, the boy diplomatically countered, ‘It’s just that your eyes are a bit intense’.

Dear Jaysus, will I ever remember how to ‘do outside’ again?

Having spent 2 years convincing the kids that Covid is real and we need to be careful, we can now tell them that officially it is cancelled. (Except when it is not). 

Even though friends and families right now have it and are very sick. (Except when you get it and nothing happens)

Even though things can still be cancelled at any moment. 

Even though they are still shoving swabs up their nose, finding out they have Covid again.

We got the Rona again.
Our unwelcome house guest. 

I guess it gives us something to talk about other than Minecraft.

The youngest has had it twice in 20 weeks. She eventually gave it to me…and unlike her lucky little asymptomatic self, it kicked my butt.

It’s a lingering house guest, the sort of overstaying visitor that makes me panic, convinced that they will never go… Eventually I have to throw their coat at them and point at the door shouting,
‘Get out!’ 

Only the virus refused to listen

It lurks when I walk upstairs and wheeze.
I go to help the kids with random parenting duty, and then have to rest.
My shoes are posing an issue. When I look down at them and contemplate putting them on my feet, they seem very far away from my head and hands.

I need to have a little sit down.

I search for words.
My mind draws blank. 

The long suffering husband looks concerned as he reminds me for the third time to do something.. then realises half way through telling me again, that I have forgotten to listen.

I feel foggy and adrift. I spend hours sitting, and when asked what I’ve been doing, I draw a blank. 

The boy summed it up. 

“It’s been going on too long Mum, hasn’t it?”

It has indeed my love.
It really has.

I was born in Ireland, grew up in England and met my Cornish husband in Catalonia. We now live in the Netherlands, in Dutch suburbia with our two differently wired, small kids. I spend my days parenting, writing and being amazed at all the Dutchness around me.

2 Comment on “Adrift

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