Day 31 of life in lockdown and tonight I am tired. I’ve been writing now for thirty days. Mostly the work happens late at night, in the inky dark by the light of the lamp. Journalling like this at night works best for me. In the silence I can dive down below the surface and find out what I am really thinking. But the problem with starting late is that often I don’t finish before 11.30pm. It’s okay, in alert level four you can manipulate your schedule and adjust your wake-up time but sometimes I would like to be in bed earlier.
For this reason, I’ve gone back to an old journal entry written on this day in 2017 and decided to reinstate an excerpt here. I wrote it when my grandson was one month old. Reading about him brought everything back and I was glad of that because coronavirus has dampened my enjoyment of my daughter’s second pregnancy. The lack of contact, me in my bubble, the three of them in theirs, and the uncertainty of what lies ahead, — will I be deprived of an opportunity to welcome the new baby, will I be able to help out? — has stolen some of the joy from the anticipation.
“Remy went happily into my arms today. Using a cushion, I propped him in my lap, facing me. His blue, blue eyes locked onto mine. I’m sure, at four weeks old, he now knows and recognises my voice. Today when I addressed him he chuckled, or tried to. He is learning how to vocalise. I’d forgotten this, how hard it is at the very beginning. He wants desperately to chortle. He opens his mouth and strains so hard he chokes. ‘Funny boy,’ I said as he screwed his face into a thousand expressions of joyful. Once he managed a swooping sigh. Then a huff of air.
The wind is blowing hard tonight, howling around the house, slipping through the cracks making blinds rattle in the room down the hall, and a sliding door bang in its frame downstairs. Me, I’m warm and secure up here on the end of the house, with the small Danish lamp glowing on the desk, as I write. Through the blinds the sky tower in the distance is lit up in different colours, section by section, a blur of fluoro pink, bright green, deep purple, shining red.”