Sept. 21, 2020

How My Days Are Going to Look

I'm worn out, but I don't feel like I did much today. I've been busy, mentally, though. Between just the two youngest kids, it looks like I'm going to have to be on top of school stuff from 7:50am until around 4:30pm.

The 10yo has his school from 8am to 10am then has independent work that usually takes him to about noon most days then has small group meetings from 12:30-12:50 on Monday and Wednesday. Today, I started a new, more supervised, schedule with the 14yo. I got her out of bed at 10am when I took my meds. By 10:30, she was logged into her iPad and working on her schoolwork. I gave her a three-hour timer to do English then she got a thirty-minute break then had to do Bio for three hours. Meanwhile, I made lunch at 11:30am and the 17yo came down right around there to get her work done on the family PC. I tried to do some writing but spent most of the time just trying to keep the three kids on track with their individual assignments.

Eventually, the 10yo finished his work and turned the TV. That was right about at the three-hour mark for the 14yo when she took a break. By the time thirty minutes was over, my husband was going to be home so we took our stuff up to my room because my husband has to have the TV on or play video games when he is home. He won't turn things off because the kids are working--his philosophy is he pays the bills so he can do whatever he likes and the rest of us can go somewhere else if it bothers us.

Of course, he had other ideas when he got home. I still needed to pick up the keepsake paw print I got for our cat that died so we drove all of the way to the vet (getting stuck in traffic for fifteen minutes because there was construction like every way we could go) then stopped at Costco on the way home. By the time we got back, it was 4:30 so I dismissed the 14yo from her classes and had dinner.

This looks like it's going to be my schedule from now on. Up by 7am at the latest so I have time to do the dishes, clean up the kitchen and make coffee before I sit in the very uncomfortable dining room chairs (they kill my back) from 8am until 2pm while trying to get three different kids to do their work when none of them want to do it and constantly distract each other then from 2 until 4:30, I have to monitor the 14yo in my room (where at least the chair is comfortable). When that's done, I immediately have to start dinner so it's done sometime between 5 and 6pm because my husband goes to bed at 8pm. I won't really get to relax and do something fun like watch Netflix until 6pm.

I honestly don't know how long I can keep that up. Last week, I was forced to take a nap as soon as the 10yo was done with his work every day. I slept from noon until 3pm most days then barely managed to stay awake until bedtime. How am I supposed to make sure everyone is doing their stuff. If I don't watch the 14yo, she spends half her time on her phone, and she's already two weeks behind in her classes with literally no way to catch up without doing 10 hours every day, including weekends because of the pace they have set (it does not allow for missed days and she missed 5 days because she was sick already). I have to keep her on task for 6 hours every day, weekends included. It's going to be hell.

They're talking about opening the elementary schools back up by early October so we have to decide what to do with the 10yo. Do we send him back and risk him getting infected and bringing it home where it could kill me and then be spread by my husband who will not take time off of work unless there is a positive test result and he's forced to call in (so no voluntary quarantine because someone in the house is potentially infected from him). There's no way to quarantine the 10yo except to put him in my room. His room is the garage and he won't sleep out there. He sleeps on the living room floor which is where my husband sleeps so by the time he shows signs of illness, he's had a chance to infect my husband the most. If he did get sick, the only place to put him is my room which means I'd be quarantined as well which means no one is cooking meals or taking care of the house. Nevermind, I'm the one with the highest risk of complications because of my health--the reason the kids were doing online school in the first place.

The other option is moving him to the online program the 14yo is doing that is causing her so much stress, she can't sleep because of the anxiety. Where they want kids sitting in front of a screen for the same amount of time they would be in school even if they normally wouldn't be working on schoolwork for every one of those minutes. I doubt the elementary program would be as strict, but I already fight him to do the three or so assignments he has (which is usually reading a couple short passages and answering a few questions and some math worksheets). I can't imagine getting him to watch a bunch of videos and do more work for 3 or 4 hours.

Same goes with the 14yo when they decide to open the high school back up. Does she stay in a program for the entire year that is probably going to give her ulcers and make her hate school so much, she gives up or do we send her back and risk her bringing COVID home?

Now I'm having trouble sleeping because of the anxiety.

The people in this town are demanding schools open because they're "over" COVID. On our walk yesterday, the playground was packed with kids (at least twelve that I counted on one small structure and two swings). We had to go the long way around to the trail instead of cutting through the playground because there were too many people there. All of the parks around here are like that. Kids are just out in large packs like nothing is going on. There are always big parties at the neighbors. No one cares. They only wear masks because they're forced to (like my husband). It's frustrating and terrifying.

The last time I had a cold, I was sick for three weeks. From a simple cold. I could not get rid of the cough the entire time and would cough until my chest felt like it was breaking and my throat was raw. From. A. Cold. I can't imagine what COVID will do to me. I'm morbidly obese (and getting worse because of my meds) and have extremely high blood pressure that is causing breathing issues among other things. COVID could very well kill me, not that anyone cares. I have a pre-existing condition so I'm apparently expendable in the general public's eyes.

I guess I should go to bed so I can get up early again. It's already wearing on me, and this is only the 4th week of school. I guess, if we do decide to switch the 10yo to the all-online program, at least we can decide when he gets up and does his work. We can start at 9 or 10 instead of 8am every day.

Written by justanotherjen

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