As cities and states around the county lock down, and other countries go into full-out quarantine mode, the Schwannema household has decided to get an early start on what might become a mandatory and necessary quarantine.
Our daycare is still open, until DHS tells them they can’t be, but the minute they close, then our only childcare option is my parents…. Who are in their 60s…. Which is one of the at-risk age groups. Plus, my mom, a cancer survivor, has had a compromised immune system and really shouldn’t take the chance of getting sick.
While I dont believe we’ve been in contact with anyone who has Covid-19, there’s just no way to know, and I always prefer to err on the side of caution. Skyler is exposed to several children (and their saliva, because toddlers) at his daycare, and one of my best friends works in the food service industry. My dad also just attended RSA, which has had two known cases. Who knows how many people are actually carrying this virus? Only confirmed tests of symptomatic people are getting reported.
So yesterday morning, after talking to my dad for a while, we decided that it would be best if we quarantined ourselves *now*, so we can interact with my parents sooner than later, and to make sure none of us infect each other when we do.
Skyler only goes to daycare 3 days a week, but I savor those days of quiet and solitude. Before I quit my job, they were obviously the only way to get any work done, with my parents watching him the other two days. Now that I’m unemployed, my daycare days are filled with job applications and research, reading and writing, and some domestic duties that are easier without an almost-toddler screaming or padding about underfoot.
If a mandated quarantine hits, we’ll be without daycare; without grandparents I’ll have no respite from the joys and noise of an adorable but needy child. Hopefully, by self-quarantining now, we can at least have some grandparent-provided childcare to get through the apocalypse.
But that means that for the short-term future, I am effectively a Stay At Home Mom with a 1-year-old (his birthday is this weekend! Yes, we postponed his party). I am not particularly well suited to be a SAHM. I know nothing about children. I lack patience and domestic prowess. My husband does the majority of the cleaning and all of the cooking. And as much as I adore my sweet boy, I relish the quiet alone time I have when he’s not here.
Pre-pandemic, the full days that Skyler is with us are broken up by activities out of the house, like going to eat or running errands, visiting my parents, or hanging out with friends. Can’t really do any of that when you’re not supposed to get near other humans for a while.
So, as we begin Day 1 of our Extreme Social Distancing, I need to learn from all of you experienced SAHMs. How do you do this? What tips do you have for me for the coming weeks? What are you supposed to do with a 1 year old all day long every single day? I found this fun “Daily Bucket List” for a 1 year old, but at least 4 of the items aren’t doable during a quarantine. So what else should I add to the list?