They say it takes a village to raise a child, unfortunately, like many people our village was hard to reach during the COVID-19 pandemic. This never felt truer than when myself, my husband and our two small boys all tested positive to COVID-19.
This was in Delta-strain times and unfortunately before we were able to have vaccinations. Our boys experienced symptoms for a few days but quickly bounced back (as kids tend to do). But in a word, my husband and I STRUGGLED. We felt like rubbish. We battled fevers, sore throats, coughs, and headaches. Our kid’s energy levels returned quickly and soon they were bouncing off the walls while they completed their two-week quarantine. Unfortunately, my husband and I had extreme fatigue and took longer to recover.
Parenting is hard at the best of times, but when you aren’t well and can’t access your normal supports, it is exhausting (side note: I have no idea how single parents manage!). Our creativity and patience were low as was our “low-screen time” resolve. What we really needed was our village, we needed grandparents to swoop in and provide our kids with extra cuddles while we rested, we needed aunties and uncles to run our kids wild at the playground while we had a cup of tea, we needed friends to supervisor scooting in the street while we lay on the couch.
Luckily, we improved and one glorious day we were out of quarantine, suddenly staring outside in wonder like a bear that emerged from its cave after a winter hibernation. The first thing we did was visit our friends and family. In doing so we started to feel like ourselves again.
What have I learnt? We need our village! We need it more so when we aren’t feeling well. We need people to support us and our kids. Don’t underestimate how important your village is. Be there for one another when you can and be grateful for anyone who is there for you.
About Jacqui Goy
Jacqui, our General Manager, is highly skilled at community and stakeholder engagement, researching best practice, delivering training and capacity building initiatives and developing strong evaluation mechanisms.
With a background in health and social planning, she is effective at building and advising local government on ways to strengthen partnerships between community groups and allied health partners to create a holistic health planning and service delivery model. Jacqui has direct experience in leading the development and implementation of Reconciliation Action Plans; the coordination and delivering of Municipal Public Health and Wellbeing Plans and the coordination of Disability Action Plans.