What a whirlwind of a fortnight it has been since I wrote my last column. I don't know about you, but this lockdown has hit me like a train and the experience has been more stressful than the last level 4 lockdown we had just over a year ago.
I can't quite put my finger on why but maybe it's because I know what to expect now, maybe it's because Delta is far more dangerous, or maybe it has something to do with how suddenly our Covid-free plans were derailed.
Either way, this has been tough, and I am not coping as well as last time. My motivation is at an all-time low, I find myself stressed and bored at the same time, and generally a bit flat. By noon, I want to drink.
I feel terrible complaining because I know how privileged we are to be able to work from home, have a safe place to stay and enough kai to get us through.
It's much more challenging for people who can't make money, and single parents, or old people who are struggling with loneliness, or those in Tāmaki Makaurau who know it's in their community, spreading.
My heart goes out to whānau who have lost loved ones and have been unable to be together to grieve and give them a proper send-off.
The biggest stressor for us has been trying to juggle working from home and caring for, entertaining and educating our tamariki. At the very least, I am far more realistic this time around about expectations and what can be achieved.
My friend posted a message on social media the other day reminding us that we are not simply "working from home", but rather we are at home, trying to work, during a national and global crisis.
Working from home with kids in lockdown means countless interruptions and demands. The kids are bottomless pits that constantly want snacks and food and attention.
It can be like doing something for your employer and doing something for your kids and feeling like you're letting both down.
I have been trying to be more mindful of what my boys are going through this time. Our kids aren't always able to articulate how they are feeling, so we might assume the situation is going right over their heads, but I doubt it is.
Kids are resilient but their lives have been upheaved too. They have been pulled out of school and lost their routines and have been cut off from their friends and family.
My youngest has been having his moments, and I have been trying not to snap at him and to make sure we get outside to help burn his energy and limit screen time.
But to be fair, our kids are probably sick of staying home and spending every waking minute with us too, and so it's important to go easy on them. It is just as important for us adults to go easy on ourselves.
To some extent, we are getting used to Covid-19. But the reality is that we are going through a pandemic that has wreaked havoc around the world. Our borders are closed. Being locked down is bizarre and intense. We miss our families. We have every right to be a mixed bag of emotions.
The past few days I've felt myself moping around the house. Neither here nor there, somewhat detached. Hungry. Tired. Tearful. I want to go for a run because I think that will make me feel better, but I also have no drive to get up and actually do it.
This Delta variant of Covid-19 is frightening – not only does it spread more easily but it is also putting more children overseas into hospital, and people who get infected with it tend to be sicker for longer.
I am pleased with the government's hard-line response to this outbreak, and I am relieved that we have taken the strict precautions we have to try to stomp it out.
The thought of accepting Covid-19 in our lives and living with the virus – which many overseas commentators are suggesting - does not sit right with me.
There is a lot to process that is completely out of our hands – so just remember to be kind to yourself. I've paced myself with work, and I told my boys' teacher that we would do what we could, but I am not going to pull my hair out trying to be superhuman.
Decline that Zoom meeting if you need to. Put off the kids' class work for another day. They are learning so much about life and resilience at the moment anyway.
There is only so much we can do and as we hunker down and carry on, please go easy on yourselves.