Yly Suardy

Jakarta, Indonesia

Hi, my name is Yly Suardy, a Monash Master of Laws alumna and Legal Counsel at the Lippo Group, Indonesia. I am a working mother with 2 children ages 13 and 9 years old.

I want to share the first week of our life in quarantine. The first week was a struggle for everyone, to us as parents, to the kids because of schooling, our house devolved into utter chaos. As a working mother, I rarely find myself spending much time at home, much less to this extent, so for the first time in a while, I had to experience the stress of dealing with two rowdy children on top of the ever demanding workload of my job. Suddenly I needed to be a teacher, a mother while balancing as a counsel to various companies. All of this stay-at-home mom business was new to me. I didn’t know how to teach my troublemaker of a son who is more akin to resembling an energetic monster instead of an actual child, or how to deal with an angsty teenager who wants nothing more than to hide away in her room all day.

We had to quickly adapt to the many complexities of living in this technology filled world we were thrust into. From learning how to use google classroom, dealing with a myriad of network issues and jammed printers, to figuring out the endless intricacies of hosting a zoom meeting, there was never a day where my husband was not bossed around the house, playing technician to whatever software that decided it wasn’t going to work that day.

It has now been thirty days since we officially started this lockdown, and I can now say that we have graduated to calmer waters. We have now settled into a more orderly, albeit still exhausting daily routine, that has made this quarantine less of a living hell (at least a more bearable one). Nonetheless, I am grateful that this quarantine has given me a chance to become closer to my family. Before this pandemic struck, I found it hard to find a balance between my work and family life, often finding myself neglecting one or another. So despite this pandemic subjecting us to many trials and tribulations, I am still grateful for all of the bonds and experiences that this has brought upon our family.

Photo: The Suardy family at home in Indonesia.