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  • Writer's pictureEllie Hamilton

Finding a new normal...

How have two months flown by since my last post?!? I have finally got my derrière into gear to write a new one and I had to remind myself the reasons why I started the blog in the first place. One of the main reasons is that I wanted it to be a memory log for Emma to look back on, so in 10 years’ time, when Emma comes home from school and tells me that they are learning about Coronavirus in History and asks me what was it like, I can say 'it was absolutely pants, but go and read mummy’s blog'.

On writing this post, Emma and I are on day 98 of self-isolation. I read my last blog post and laughed at my past self when I wrote that we would hopefully only be in isolation for 4-5 weeks – HA!

The only time I have been out is to do the weekly supermarket shop on a Saturday morning and the only time Emma has left the house is the odd car journey to drop Danny off somewhere or in the back yard for a quick game of football, but it is now getting too hot to do anything outside i.e. it's 37 degrees today, but due to the humidity it feels like 43 degrees (which is insanely hot and yes my hair is like Monica's from friends when I leave the house). If you follow me on Instagram you will see the various art and craft bits Emma and I have been doing together and what you haven’t seen is the countless roleplay games we have been playing of restaurant, ice cream shop, doctors and nurses, tea parties etc. Emma also had her first experience of baking which she absolutely loved and would do every day....if I had the patience.

One of the positives of lockdown (yes there has been more than one) is I will be able to look back on this time with Emma and instead of having regret I will be able to say I could not have played and had more fun with my child if I had tried and hopefully Emma will remember that too.

So how has the pandemic been affecting Oman, well by mid-May the numbers were starting to drop and we were starting to see light at the end of the tunnel, but towards the end of May, Eid was celebrated and the cases started to jump up significantly. The news reported that the rise in numbers was a result of family and expat labor workers having gatherings to celebrate Eid, which is incredibly frustrating that some people do not feel like the rules apply to them. As of yesterday, Oman has had 32,394 cases (of which over 50% have recovered) and sadly 140 deaths.

On the positive side the recovery rate is high, with some days the recovery numbers matching the case numbers i.e. earlier this week there was 896 cases in one day, but 806 recoveries.

It was announced yesterday that several more commercial activities were opening such as Malls, which does provide a little light relief, however children under 12 and adults over 60 cannot go in. I should also mention that everyone is required to wear a mask when out in public anywhere and if you are caught without one you are fined 20 OMR (£40) and let me just tell you that wearing a face mask in 40+ degree heat results in a very sweaty, beetroot looking face…it ain’t pretty!

Another positive which has come out of lockdown has been having time to focus on me. I am in the incredibly fortunate position where I don’t need to work so when Emma has her nap time it means....

I’ve found time to workout which I have been doing 5 days a week, every week since mid-April and as a result I have lost 15 inches which I am incredibly proud of.

I also want to point out that I haven’t been on a ‘diet’, but I have been on The Body Coach Plan which teaches you about the right food to eat when incorporating it into a fitness programme and I feel the best I have ever felt, I even tolerate doing burpees now which is something I never imagined saying.

Whilst we have been riding the storm like everyone else, I am very conscious that the boat we are in is an incredibly lucky one. We have a roof over our heads, a steady income, food on the table and our health, and at this time we don’t need anything more than that. I am forever grateful that we have been able to speak to our family and friends through video chat and I can’t wait to see everyone back in the UK when this is all over, just be prepared for some very long and probably slightly awkward hugs.

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