Lockdown Diaries: Respecting the anxieties of a five-year-old during the prolonged lockdown period

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I am keeping lockdown diaries of my five-year-old daughter Inishka Bhattacharya for research. I talk with her to understand the tensions that she is going through during the lockdown period. All the bits shared at the bottom are her words from my COVID-19 diaries.

I thought it would be good to share these as it can help other parents to work with their children in similar manner. Children get unsettled and this is their way of expressing anxiety. It is important that we as parents understand and respect these emotions.

It is difficult time! Inishka is five years old and we have never experienced this at that age. These lockdowns are teaching us several lessons!

Inishka’s thoughts

“My name is Inishka Bhattacharya. I live in Leicester. I go to Parks Primary School. My school is very good and I miss my school and teachers. The Coronavirus is in town. The police patrols in the street. We are not allowed to go to the park or ride my bike. My friends cannot visit us. I miss my friends.

Inishka Bhattacharya

My teachers give me work every day to do from home. I send them drawings, record songs, tell stories. They also tell us lovely stories. I love animal stories. I am only scared of tigers. I miss the Guinea pig in my school. He eats carrot and drinks water from pipe.

I do exercise with Cosmic Kids and it is fun. We start yoga by saying namaste from heart. Everyday I help my mum in the garden. The weeds are very strong. We need to clean them, otherwise they disturb other plants. There are lots of snail shells in the garden. I love counting them. They eat leaves and flowers. I wish I could dig holes like Peter rabbit, then Coronavirus would not see me.

In the morning the birds come to eat from the bird feeder on the tree. My papa fills the feeder with grains. The birds are not afraid of coronavirus as they can fly in the sky. I wish I could fly in the sky. The corona virus attacks humans, we cannot fly. The corona virus cannot fly too.

In the afternoon, I draw pictures with crayons, oil pastels and water colour. I also colour empty glass bottles. Then we play table tennis on our dining table. We do not have a net so I have given four books to my mum to use them as net.

I am sure the corona virus will go away in hundred days as they will miss their family. Then I can go out in the park with my family.”

Dr Indrani Lahiri

Dr Indrani Lahiri is a Senior Lecturer in Media & Communication at De Montfort University. She holds an Associate Fellowship with the Institute of Commonwealth Studies at the University of London. She is the Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a Senior Fellow of Higher Education Academy and an Academic Consultant in public relations. Interested in developing interdisciplinary, cross-disciplinary research projects nationally and internationally, Dr Indrani's research focuses on digital media and society, exploring issues around mental health, education and technology.
You may contact her at ilahiri@dmu.ac.uk