Monday, March 16, 2020

Lockdown Meltdown And Losing The Plot

The almond tree
in the school vegetable garden has blossomed.
We have not blossomed.
Yesterday I got up bright and early and ready to start the lockdown routine. I went to my school to collect all my books. DD had been to her school on Saturday evening to clear out her locker. (Yes, they told us to take EVERYTHING! What does that tell you about the thinking here? Kids were signed out once they had cleared their lockers.)

I didn't go to the bank on the way home because I was carrying a heavy load of books, so that's still to do, but not today.

DD was still in pyjamas when I got home, and watching You Tube. Her bedroom looked like a bomb had hit it with her bed unmade and all her school books everywhere.

I calmly continued with my planned schedule by setting up homework for my school pupils. Then I smugly filled in my Day Book about the morning's activities and went to make lunch. This is where it all started to fall apart.

DD didn't want any lunch and insisted on taking a bag of crisps instead. Later she came back for some cake. I said that I'm not buying any more sugar things because she eats them instead of proper food and it makes her irritable off-the-wall crazy mad. She screamed at me that I was talking rubbish. (She didn't see the irony.) She stomped off, I ate too much to calm my nerves. She hated me. I hated myself. And that was lunch on day 1.

In the afternoon I insisted that we watch a documentary together. We chose one about the history of astrology. She sat on her phone saying that it was boring. I was totally fascinated and spent the rest of the day watching more and more programmes about the link between astrology and religion. Then I fell asleep on the sofa.

DD did do some painting in the afternoon but she refused to enter into the spirit of the day book at all.

Day 2. I vowed to do better. We got up and I got dressed. DD: "Why? It's just a waste of clothes!" I had no answer.

At 09.00 DD had to sign in for school with an emoji on the class whatsapp expressing how she was feeling. They have 'classes' until 12.30 every day with the teachers available on email, whatsapp and phones. The first lesson this morning was English so we were cool.

I had set up a laptop for her on the dining table but luckily today's work was all in notebooks and on the phone. Others are reporting that so many kids are on the educational websites that they're all crashing. Other families are trying to juggle one computer amongst several kids and working at home parents. It's a jungle out there.

Next DD had geography and I had to set up two classes of work online in lieu of my lessons in college tomorrow. DD didn't understand what she had to do and neither did I - 6th grade Hebrew and all. She had a meltdown. I called one of her friends to ask. She screamed at me that I was embarrassing her. Now that I knew what it was about, I wrote down some reasons why we still need to save water despite desalination. She screamed at me that I don't know anything. I burst into tears. I wrote to the class teacher that I don't think we can do this.

Eventually we came up with a good rhyming couplet to encourage saving water and used google to check our Hebrew spelling. Part of the problem was seeing everyone else sending in great jingles. DD crumpled under the double pressure of writing something and then having everyone see it.

DD was finally happy. I had to eat a packet of crisps.

Then came Tenach (Bible Studies). This is not only in Hebrew, it's in biblical Hebrew (think Shakespeare for EFL students) and there's a website involved. We gave up.

I've not done any of my work but I'm exhausted and I've got a headache and I'm still a bit teary and fragile from the whole experience. I'm blogging to get it off my chest and then I'm going to find out more about Noah's Ark, Moses, Mithras, The Budha, Joseph and Jesus all being based on Pagan myths about the sun and the stars.

I'm done for the day, I'm done in, and it's only 11.30 am. We'll try again tomorrow.


  1. Oh dear - how stressful. I think it's the whole situation is getting to kids - even if they don't express it as such - plus, being out of her routine and away from her friends is just adding to the meltdown factor.
    But - she is almost a teenager so perhaps after a day or so there would be time to sit and talk with her and just point out to her how much better off she is than many during this global nightmare - and it is ok to point out that it's global - not something that was sent just to upset her.
    She has a lovely home with a bedroom of her own and she has a balcony - something many of us wish we had right now! She isn't going hungry - you are able to be with her - and she can reach out to her friends and relatives via the internet so she is hardly deprived.
    This isn't a picnic for you either so I understand the bags of chips - for me it's chocolate - if yesterday was anything to go by I'm going to gain about 50 pounds before this is all over! I too have to get myself into a better routine. I will go into the office for another day or two for just a few hours but then I'll be staying home as it looks as though the church is closing down and we've already closed most of our programs - we're just going through the final approval and notifications. All bars & restaurants are to close by midnight (except for takeout or delivery) and many shops have already closed as no one is coming out to shop so for all intents and purposes the city is shutting down bit by bit. It's going to be hard on everyone for the next few weeks - stay well - and hang in there!

    1. Thanks Margie. DD is fine most of the time but when she feels under pressure the hormones go crazy. This was the case even before school stopped but then she had to get on with it as she was at school most of the day. I'm watching the news from around the world and today there are lots of reports that in China and Korea it may be coming to an end. So there are reasons to be hopeful that this could be over by the summer rather than go on till next spring, which is what some 'experts' were saying a couple of days ago. Take care of yourself. xxx

  2. Oh boy, that sounds like a whole bunch of no fun!! Hang in there.

    1. Thanks, it got better over the next couple of days. I've just published a post about UBI and thought of you. Actually I've been thinking of you throughout this whole homeschooling experience. Although it's different when the assignments are still being set by the teacher.