What a week. Covid hit the Howells household hard. One by one we’ve gone down like flies and I can safely say this has been the most challenging week of my life. With a husband who’s been admitted to hospital, I’ve been flying solo in self-isolation with the two boys for five days now – five days which have officially been the longest days ever.

Covid completely sucks. I’ve now seen and experienced first hand just what it does to people, and quite frankly, it can really go and do one. I’ve watched my husband unable to breathe whilst I’ve tried to keep us all calm and make a call to 999. I’ve listened to our little Wilf wheeze with every breath, sobbing and coughing as he’s felt so rotten. I’ve seen how invisible this virus is too – how our wonderful Theo hasn’t had one symptom and has been bouncing around the house.

Any parent will know that feeling unwell yourself and having to look after kids isn’t nice. Bless them, they don’t understand and of course, they come first. I’m lucky that my symptoms were mild and quite shortlived, but still, I felt really rotten. But add to that the broken nights, the 5am starts, the worry of the other part of your team being in hospital… it’s not exactly been easy. And it’s really bloody lonely too.

But there are things I’ve learned this week, and things that have also been reaffirmed more than ever. Friends and family save the day; the gestures of kindness and support have meant the world, and we are so grateful to have such thoughtful people in lives.

I’ve learned even more to make things up as I go along. Be that making it a game of ‘let’s look out for the ambulance’ at 7am, or playing trick or treating at home or having morning baths to pass a good half hour, this week really has been a true test as a parent.

And I’ve also learned more so than ever that my boys are the absolute joys of my life. Of course, I really can’t wait to see the back of them, but goodness me they’ve made me smile. Theo has understood everything like trooper and deserves a medal; he’s been kind and patient and has only thrown wobbles (and rightly so) every so often. And Wilf has continued to make me even more grey as he’s bounced back to himself and caused havoc as always.

There are Cheerios everywhere and there has probably been way too much screen time. There have been times where I’ve had a sneaky cry in the bathroom before being found by a little one. There has been an unimaginable amount of crafting and chaos at the kitchen table. We’re certainly surviving rather than thriving, but we can do this.

So to anyone who has been through this and got through it, hats off to you. And to anyone who has escaped this so far – keep trying to escape it and be as safe as you possibly can. Covid is no joke.

Here’s to having a well husband home soon, a really long walk and a glass of wine that I can eventually taste. Freedom is a few days away yet but we will most certainly all be jumping out of that front door when we can.