Life Right Now – February

If you’re in the mood for a quick read, you’re in luck. 

Unlike last month’s Life Right Now, this one won’t be filling you in on too much because there’s not too much to tell. Other than churning out blog posts like a madwoman, February has been CRAZY QUIET.

Here’s the lowdown on what’s going on in my life right now.   

The Dreaded F Word 

We got a call from Arabella’s school just before 16:00 on Tuesday, 16 February, saying that we needed to come and collect her as she had a slight fever. It was all downhill from there. 

The next day, I felt like I’d been hit by a truck. The day after that, Daddydaims joined the ranks of The Sick Elders. 

For three nights in a row, we contemplated taking Arabella to the hospital. This poor child of mine became so ill so quickly that we didn’t quite know what to do with her or ourselves. Truth time: feverish kids are terrifying to be around. 

At her worst, her fever clocked in at 39.77 degrees Celcius and my heart felt like it turned to ice when she said “why is my head spinning?”. Thankfully, we managed to break the fever with lukewarm baths, alternating between baby Panado and baby Nurofen, and a whole lot of praying.    

Pick an F word – flu, fever, or perhaps something more colourful. 

Given the severity of our symptoms and how long we were sick, we thought we had Covid (more on that in a few!). We wouldn’t have survived without Rach and Milo and their deliveries of chicken soup, that much is certain. 

A Fun Brain-Poking Family Outing

Back in my younger days, I was a proper worry wart but I’ve gotten more level-headed with age. So when we made the decision to get tested for Covid-19, know that it was not something that was decided lightly. 

As you probably know, Covid tests cost R 850,00. Now, for one person that’s nothing. But multiply that by 3 and you get R 2 550,00. Plus a doctor’s consultation fee. In the middle of the month, nogal! Not having that amount of cash lying around, we knew we had no choice. 

Once again, we had to go government

So there we were at 05:45 in the morning, sitting on the side of William Nicol Drive along with hundreds of other sick people, waiting for Witkoppen Clinic to open. There was zero social distancing taking place from anyone except ourselves. There was even a gloveless woman walking in between the lines selling vetkoek out of a bucket!

I’m not gonna lie; I had very low expectations. I stood in that queue seething that we didn’t have the money to go and get tested privately, and that we didn’t have medical aid, and that I FORGOT TO FREAKING PACK TISSUES for my snotty family. 

But once the clinic opened and it was finally our turn to enter, we were blown away. The grounds were clean, the staff was friendly, and we were given a level of service that we simply didn’t expect. The paperwork took an age, and it was a bit strange that we were tested outdoors in a staff-only area, but the whole experience was painless.

The test itself was unpleasant. Because Arabella is so young and her nasal cavities aren’t big enough for a PCR test she only had to have her tonsil swabbed, but Daddydaims and I weren’t so lucky.   

The giant nasal swab is so long that we swear we felt it BEHIND our eyeball. Our nostril felt a little weird for some time after, but overall it wasn’t nearly as bad as we had been expecting. Daddydaims says he would describe the whole experience as “Fine. Uncomfortable. All together very professional.”

High praise indeed.  

Sure, it took five hours to have a seven-second test, but we didn’t pay a cent AND we each got a course of antibiotics and painkillers. We had our negative (YAY!) test results back within five days and I reckon I’ll be singing praise for Witkoppen Clinic for many moons.  

Arabella’s Antics

We had to self-isolate until we received our test results, so working from home was the order of the week for us. It was a little stressful trying to do our jobs, parent, and establish some sort of routine while things were so out of whack. 

But let me tell you something. Arabella is the best tiny human a person could ask for. She has been absolutely incredible and has handled this chaotic time with such grace. She takes her medicine like a boss and knows to keep quiet when mum or dad is on the phone. 

There were many moments when either Daddydaims or myself would just look at her and say “you’re the best, you know that?” or “man, we made the most amazing person.” 

It was bananas being at home for so long, but I must say that we appreciated this chance to spend so much quality time with Arabella, even if we felt like butt most of the time.  

Valentine’s Day Ball 

On 12 February, Arabella attended a Valentine’s Ball at her school. Cue the cute! 

The theme was “Mad Hatter’s Tea Party” and ALL the kids dressed up, which was great. One of my biggest fears — that 100% stems from my own childhood — is that I send Arabella to school and she’s the only one dressed up.

We generally don’t have extra cash lying around to rent, buy or design costumes so we usually end up making her own outfits. 

True to form, we DIYed it and Arabella was chuffed with the results. To get the look, all you need is an old silk pillowcase (thanks Just Aunt Tal!), a red permanent marker, and a seriously tight budget. 

Posts You May Have Missed

There ain’t no hood like motherhood, that’s for sure. I get it, being a mom often means that the only alone time you score to yourself are five-minute bathroom breaks or those mini panic attacks you get as you mentally revise your never-ending to-do list just before calling it a night. 

In case you missed them, this month I dished the deets on Our Holiday to Hermanus, interviewed Daddydaims for our Valentine’s Day Q&A 2.0, filled you in on 10 Tips for Road Tripping with a Toddler, and I invited my go-to labour lawyer to spill the beans on Everything You Need to Know About Maternity Leave in South Africa.  

Dang, I did a lot this month. 

Farewell February 

In all honesty, February kind of sucked a little bit. It was so awful seeing Arabella feeling so ill, and what made it even worse was that neither myself nor Daddydaims was in tip-top condition to look after another human.  

My word for the month is probably one that I should have chosen a long time ago: health.

Now before you spazz and think I’m planning on turning into one of those fitness freak momma bears, put your panic pants aside for now. After being super sick for 10 days straight, Daddydaims and I decided that it was time to make a couple of changes in our lives. 

We’re not making any major changes to start with, we’re simply appreciating our health and doing what we can to better it — starting with adding a bunch of fresh veggies to our diet. 

I’ve also decided that, for the sake of my mental health, it’s time for me to start journaling again. It’s not like I write much anyway, right? 😉 

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