It seems a bit mad to think we’ve been living in this covid limbo for 12 while months.
The week before the schools closed we assessed the situation and decided we felt safer with our boys at home.
With Thomas’ health needs we were concerned that he would be very vulnerable to this mystery new illness and decided not to take a chance.
I remember the reply from my eldest’s school, after I’d emailed them to advise them of our decision.
They suggested that we review in a week.
I felt a surge or panic then.
What would we do in a week? Would it be any safer? How long could I keep him home before I got fined?
It seems silly now with hindsight.
A week later schools shut and he didn’t return until September!
So we started the pandemic feeling uncertain and anxious.
Just how dangerous was this virus? Could we protect our family? Could we get a food shopping slot?!
And even back then, in March 2020, moments of sheer panic – has the world irrevocably changed for our family? Again?
The months rolled by, the days blending together.
Just the five of us, and later Thomas’ carer.
It was like the longest chill out weekend ever. Like many I baked. A lot. And I sorted and tidied a lot.
And we survived.
See we’ve already lived through one event where our envisioned future was ripped away in a moment.
We’ve been living with fragile health for five years, where a simple cold results in HDU stays.
We’re used to isolation and being stuck at home.
It was like sliding our feet into a worn pair of slippers.
Even as we hesitantly started the new year, it still felt like we were walking well trodden ground.
Grateful when the schools closed and we could retreat safely into our familiar and safe little family bubble.
And now here we are.
Over 12 months later. We've spent the best part of the last year shielding.
My eldest and Thomas managed the Autumn term at school, while myself, my husband and my youngest stayed at home to reduce our exposure as much as we could.
My Eldest went back to school 2 weeks ago, it’s strange being stuck at home without him, but the school run is a welcome reprieve and a great way for me to dip my toes back into society.
Thomas is still shielding until the 31st of March.
The government says that shielding can end at the end of this month, because all vulnerable adults will have been offered a vaccine by this point.
I’m not really sure where that leaves those of us with clinically extremely vulnerable kids, especially young ones like Thomas who is just 5.
Is it really any safer for him out there?
As we approach the end stages of this pandemic we remain uncertain and anxious for our boy.
I still have moments of panic that our world has in fact changed for good.