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Oribi Mom: 24 things I survived in 24 months of lockdown

A male boomslang in the laundry that was not happy hiding in a watering can.

Has it really been that long? Here are 24 things I’ve come through as I find myself standing in 2022 and feeling grateful to be alive.

1 Giving birth after standing at the emergency entrance answering COVID questions between contractions.

2 Renovations so that we didn’t have four people sleeping in one room anymore.

3 Sending my child to play school for the first time and hoping it wouldn’t mean bringing COVID home.

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4 A spider bite (while breastfeeding at 2am) that tried to destroy at least two toes over the next ten months.

5 A riot that sent us into extra lockdown, food rations, nightwatch, and prayer.

6 350mm of rain in one week that destroyed roads, cancelled school, and sent giant boulders sliding down into the gorge roads.

7 A male boomslang in the laundry that was not happy hiding in a watering can.

8 Two years of cancelled birthday parties.

9 Several lengthy power failures, including one recent stretch of EIGHT days with two sick children (on the farm, no electricity also means no water).

10 Two years of missed church services, Sunday School, and face to face conversations with our community.

11 Another pregnancy, but also having to choose a new OB/GYN as my beloved stalwart retired!

12 A Christmas and New Year’s disaster where a certain virus I am tired of naming scattered the family back into isolation.

13 At least 20 months without a haircut from a professional.

14 More than 24 months of missed Mom’s group teas that used to be a weekly time to catch up and let the children play with friends.

15 Losing at least one freelance client due to the pandemic, which forced the company to shut down.

16 Postponing holiday bookings for a third year running.

17 Two years of masks, sprays, wipes, looks of suspicion, and a widespread fear of coughs and sneezes.

18 Two years wondering how long coffee-stained teeth and a lost filling can go without dental work.

19 Four remaining chickens and three bunnies still managing to eat pumpkins flowers, chew welcome mats, poo on the porch, and scratch out flower seedlings whenever they have the chance.

20 Yet another season of relentless lantana, bugweed, blackjacks, and burrs.

21 Finally deactivating Facebook, deleting Twitter, and cleaning up diminishing Gmail storage.

22 Losing three grandparents and friends and saying goodbye behind a screen

23 Two years without weddings, dates, parties, public events, theatre, international travel, movies, or Saturday night braais with friends.

24 Over two years without a Zest lolly. Only kidding, we would never have survived that! In fact, those sweet frozen treats might be the top reason we moved to the South Coast.

It’s only been 24 months. We can carry on surviving if we need to, but it does feel like there might be a change in the air. There is always hope.

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