It is another Monday morning during lockdown. My phone is ringing incessantly and between calls it beeps non-stop signifying yet another new message or email. I glance at my watch noting that it is not yet 7 o’clock, while downing my second cup of strong and bitter coffee. I kick-start my laptop thinking that if only I was not so scared of needles I would contact AND convince my GP to demonstrate via video call how to go about getting my caffeine fix running intravenously all day long. I realise I have about 43 minutes to respond to all my WhatsApp messages and e-mails, have a shower (note to myself remember to shave your armpits), dress, eat, brush teeth, get the kids’ clothes and breakfast ready and download their homework sheets before they wake up. I am wondering why they didn’t send it the previous night to give me more time to prepare. My OCD is increasing with every second…

I have one more worksheet to print and I better hurry up. I feel funny in my head like I’m spinning and I have a nauseous spot dancing around in the pit of my stomach. I have one more worksheet to print and … I lift my head for a second and decide to take a deep breath… no two, there I feel better already… now where was I … ok download completed.

Now I see that the worksheet “My 2020 COVID-19 Time Capsule” is not compulsory. SERIOUSLY! Why on earth did they send it if it’s not compulsory. I’m considering not printing it. Really isn’t it enough that I have to work twice as hard to be “THE BEST MOM ON EARTH” during lockdown. OK! OK! OK! Print it, we will get to it somehow, compulsory or not.

And now it’s Wednesday, and I have printed another copy and yes, another copy. I love it. My son loves it. So does my daughter and so does my husband. Every night, together as a family, we complete only one page of the 2020 Covid-19 Capsule worksheet. These are especially special times. We talk about the Corona crises, we ask many, many questions, sometimes we find answers, other times we do not. We complain about the lockdown and what comes with it. We cry about some of the things that will come with the “new normal” because some of it is quite scary.

We reassure each other. We laugh about people’s lockdown antics. We experience many different emotions. Some of these emotions we still have to deal with. It is almost like a cleansing / detox exercise, but somehow enjoyable …

I will keep adding to their 2020 Covid-19 Capsule and this Capsule will be added to their already existing Capsules which were started on their respective first birthdays. Imagine them opening these when they turn 21. Special treasures containing special memories of happy times as well as memories of getting through difficult times. And remembering that a dark cloud CAN have a silver lining, we just have to look for it!

Contributed by Justine Nieuwoudt