What is your current role?
I’m a doctor – I work as a kidney specialist and I also do some general medicine/perioperative hospital work.
How has this been affected by Covid 19?
I’m doing all of my usual clinics by telehealth, so lots of phone and videocalls, and I now do the calls from my study. The hospital work has actually been very quiet lately because of the shutdown of elective surgery, and because people are just not going to hospitals for non essential reasons.
How many kids do you have and how old are they?
I have one 18 month old girl called Madeleine (Maddie).
How has Covid 19 impacted your work and home life right now?
Working from home, especially doing phone call consults from my study, with Maddie not in childcare anymore is tricky as there are no boundaries between work and home. My husband cares for her when I’m working but it’s still hard when there’s not that physical separation anymore and I can often hear her asking for me! A few times she has busted into the room and tried to join in a videocall. My husband and I both work part time, but I have some busier weeks and he goes away for blocks of work sometimes – so we often take turns being the main carer when the other person is working more, which works well for us. At the moment his work isn’t happening and so he’s doing more childcare and I’ve taken on a bit more work.
Maddie is a very on the go 18 month old so it’s a busy day keeping her occupied at the best of times, so tricky trying to stay at home and not do the group activities we used to do. We also have a 6 month old Labrador and we often take them both to the dog park to run around. It’s great to watch them running around together getting their boisterous energy out.
How has Covid 19 influenced how you feel about motherhood?
I am a real extrovert and don’t like being unable to go socialise- but during this stay at home period I’ve really appreciated having Maddie who gives me a lot of joy and keeps me very occupied! Its been nice taking joy in the little things, like watching her learn new words and skills (including opening the door to my work space!) and spending time with my husband, largely at the dog park. I especially enjoy trying to spend time with her in nature, so we’ve been trying to do that on a micro level, looking at little things in our backyard and the park, taking the time to slow down.
However, to be honest, it’s also made me appreciate that motherhood is something I do along with my other role as a doctor. I love my child and love being a mum- I also like being able to leave the house and focus on work, and I’m really looking forward to being able to do that again in the normal way, whenever that happens. I’m appreciative that parenting is a team sport and we are set up like that in usual times. Hearing my husband negotiate with the toddler from my study when I’m trying to work also reminds me to really appreciate him!
How will you be celebrating Mother’s Day this year?
I will have just finished a big block of work on the Saturday and I’ve reminded my husband that Sunday is Mother’s Day… So I’m hoping I get some kind of breakfast cooked for me or something. During the stage three restrictions I’ve been doing a bit of riding a bike with Maddie in the trailer, so we might go for a family bike ride towing her along.