So today is day 1 of me working from home whilst trying to home school two 6-year olds. It started off not to badly, but I quickly realised it was going to be a challenge.
I consider myself to have good mental health and to have tried and tested measures in place to ensure that I can manage challenging times; Yoga; running; positive self-coping statements; supportive friends and amazing parents. Yet even with guidance about the work from school and flexible working hours, my anxiety and stress levels have already begun to increase. Questions mill around my head like ‘What is the impact that this will have on my children? on their education? on their social and mental well-being?’. One of them enjoys the academic side of things more than the other, but both are extremely sociable. How will this undefined period of time, spent at home, impact on them?
Then I started to think about something my sister said to me recently about ‘the COVID-19 generation’ and about all of the young people who had studied for 2 years towards GCSE’s, one of which is her son, my nephew. She described him as being confused and not able to decide if he felt happy or sad about not now being able to sit his exams; all that time spent on revision and not be able to find out whether all his hard work had been worthwhile. He’s a bright lad and has aspirations to study A-levels and eventually engineering, but I wonder if or when he reaches this goal, will he suffer with imposter syndrome like so many of us do these days.
Those mixed emotions that he is experiencing, at this crucial time in his life, are perhaps more worthy of thought than my worries and concerns. After all, I do know what I will be doing for the undefinable period of time it takes to beat the Corona Virus, whereas as he said he ‘just feels a bit lost as to what to do at the moment’ he can’t look forward to future studying and he doesn’t know if he needs to start thinking of other routes forward like apprenticeships, maybe? These are unsettling times for us all.