Nicola’s Pandemic Diary II: A Day in the Life of a Mother

Nicola Simpson

I decided a while back to record a single day for the project so this is my June 18th. I tried to capture some of my thoughts and feelings as well as just what I did at the time.  I only just got round to typing up from my dodgy handwritten notes.

6am Baba woke earlier than usual today. He has been waking between 8 – 8.30 recently. Hubby changed his nappy and fed him a bottle while I dozed and checked Twitter to see what was going on in the world – same shit as yesterday.

7am Got out of bed and had a wee thought about getting a shower before breakfast but decided to unload the washing machine instead. Big Nappy wash last night and looks like it is going to be another mizzly day so hung the nappies on a rail upstairs.

7.30 Breakfast is ready so will hang the rest of the wash later. Feeling grumpy and tired. Have been thinking about writing a 'letter to loneliness' for the Ordinary Extraordinary project and wondering if loneliness and depression are just different words for the same thing...


Made a meal/shopping list over breakfast. Trying to buy what we need for a week in one shop so planning is important. Hubby usually does the shopping on one of his days off at the weekend. Previously in lockdown we did a fortnightly shop but it was a ridiculous squeeze getting everything into the fridge. Saw a giant spider skirt out from behind the washing machine. Not sure I'm going to wake up today.

10.00 – 11.30 Making the Future zoom meeting started a little late but it gave me a chance to make a cup of coffee. Morning coffee is something to be thankful for. Lots of people reported having technical issues preventing them from joining the Slack group but I've been lucky with it so far. I talked about how some of the activities could be quite emotional and very personal and as others talked I created a list of possible things to include in a scrapbook (things I've bought or ordered recently, tweets/facebook messages, shopping lists or receipts, vox pops with friends and family.) Also thinking I could write a letter to the maternity staff who looked after me last year. A parcel arrived for me during the meeting. Im still paranoid about hand washing when anything new comes into the house. It was some stuff I ordered from North Star – a place I have been to for a few holistic therapy treatments. I ordered a vaporiser for essential oils after the one I ordered on Amazon didn't work. Also ordered a box of positive words/designs, some tea and lip balm all impulse buys.

Argued with husband this morning after breakfast over something very petty – how to wash baby bottles but really it was about being overwhelmed by lockdown and unsure what my life is going to look like in the future. The thing that you argue about is never really the thing you are arguing about though....

Before Lunch Spent a bit of time tweeting/reading about childcare issues people are having because of Covid-19 restrictions. Hubby read Pinocchio to baba and told me that he always got very confused about Jimmy Cricket and Jiminy Cricket when he was little. I have a memory of Jimmy Cricket playing Jiminy Cricket in a panto though so maybe thats the root of the confusion...or maybe I had the exact same problem! Lunch Had soup for lunch. Baba didn't eat well and he normally loves soup. Normally loves everything we give him. He had orange, banana and milk in the end and fell asleep while taking his bottle. After lunch I did some sorting in the kitchen – lots of areas needing baby proofed as Baba becomes more mobile. Lots of things still need to find a new home.

The afternoon Baba has discovered a love for cables and cords (eg laptop, telephone, phone chargers etc) and has also started wriggling and squirming a lot during nappy changes. I still haven't got the knack of tooth brushing either. I know it's silly to be frustrated by it but it's becoming a source of tension/angst. I seem to spend a lot of time thinking about baby poo, pee, food and ear wax – how are you supposed to clean a babies ears? It would be nice to have some local mums to chat about all these mundane things, facebook groups just aren't as good. Spent some of the afternoon 'sorting' through my wardrobe. Only a small pile to get rid of. How long do you keep clothes for in the hope that you will wear them again? Some of these haven't been worn in years but I hold on to them. 18.00 Babas eating and sleeping patterns are all out of whack. Not sure what that is going to mean for bedtime. He is drinking a bottle now while his Dad has dinner then I will get mine, usually we all eat the same thing at the table. Some days you think you have it sussed but you don't. Its veggie chilli tonight from the freezer. We make almost all our own food, including bread and it can be time consuming so its always good to have a few dinners on stand by.

19.45 Baba is having bath time with Dad while I fold and put away clothes... Another bottle... More tweeting... 21.00

Last few dishes to do before bed, then reading until... ?