Dutch Lock Down Day One

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

I haven’t seen my partner in seventeen hours. I think the natives voted him off the island. Or ate him.

The five year old seems to have enlisted the two year olds into his army.

The cat insists none of this is real.

She might be right.

No, but seriously.

Today was basically shit with highlights of winning.

I ran across this infographic a few days ago and it’s been our guide for today. I COMPLETELY missed the source. If you know, let me know so I can properly give credit.

First of all, today was day ONE so … we used it as a guide, not a golden rule and we were super forgiving with ourselves and our kids.



I can tell that I’m freaking the fuck out about all this because I was a jerk TWICE to strangers.


We had to do TWO things out of the house today – run to A’s school to pick up his work for the next week. According to the school’s email sent out last night, the kids would have work for the next week which we could pick up 0800-1000 or 1900-2000 today. And the school is going to be otherwise closed for the next three weeks.

We throw the kids into the car and drive over, explaining that ONLY mama will be running into the school to grab some assignments for A.

So boy twin starts howling as soon as I jump out of the car, but it’s not my problem.

I don’t think I’m that stressed.


Then I run over to A’s building and it’s locked and all the lights are turned off and there’s a rather intimidating sign in Dutch on the doors saying it’ll be closed until 06 April due to the coronavirus.

No worries.

I go into the main building and wait patiently while a teacher hands out work to a parent and then when he turns to me I say IN DUTCH, ‘is there work for the young kids?’

ASIDE: In case you’re curious, “Is er werk voor de onderbouwers?”

The teacher shrugs and says he doesn’t know (this is all in Dutch) and asks someone walking by at that moment if she knows.

She says, LAUGHING, in Dutch, “No, it’s closed because of the illness.”

I knew I was upset because tears literally sprang to my eyes. And all Dutch LEFT MY BRAIN.

I choked out a laugh myself, and said IN ENGLISH, “I KNOW the school is closed due to the coronavirus. The EMAIL said work would be available for pick up today this morning 0800-1000 and tonight 1900-2000. Is it NOT available for ONDERBOUWERS?”

I could tell from their expressions that I may have yelled. Or that I looked like I was about to fall apart. For whatever reason they responded that they were sorry, no, no work was available for onderbouwers.

I was still shaking when I got into the car and I’m fairly sure I vented a bit too hard at P.

So the rest of the day was OKAY with some academic time and some outside time and some screen time and some actual work and boy twin TOTALLY crashed one of my conference calls and since we were talking coronavirus things, I turned on the video and HE TOTALLY WAVED AT EVERYONE AND SAID HELLO.


Before that call, though, while I was working, at some point I was cancelling a work trip and the interface errored out three times.

I call.

The call hold music has all kinds of warnings that the wait time is longer than usual and if you’re not flying out in the next seventy two hours, please use the form.

And, apparently, that just got under my skin?

Cause when the poor agent got to me, I jumped down her throat.

She fixed everything with the most amazing attitude in the universe.

And I apologized profusely.

It sucked.

I suck.

I mean, I know I don’t suck, but the whole situation sucks. SUCKS isn’t even the right word. This is devastating and intense and terrifying and exhausting and stressful and it SUCKS.

I hope you’re doing better than I am.


Photo by Chen Mizrach on Unsplash

And despite the two #FAILS of today, there were all kinds of wins.

Both P and I managed to get A to do some academic things, drawing circles and counting and identifying shapes and colors and such and HOLDING THAT DAMN PENCIL CORRECTLY.

Everyone got outside time.

Boy twin is content to join a conference call if Barbapapa is on in the background and he gets to cuddle with Mama. Girl twin is utterly content to sit quietly on a swing while Papa pushes her and talks on a call for FORTY FIVE MINUTES.

Tomorrow will be more ‘normal’ (whatever that means) as we won’t have to run into school or P’s work to grab things (oh, yes, we did that, too, cause his building is closing / no access for the next THREE WEEKS) and we’ll simply dive right into the aforementioned daily schedule and try to work a bit as we can.


How’re you managing everything?