A few weeks ago, podcaster and author Meshel Laurie spent three consecutive nights building a shoe cabinet from IKEA.
When she finished, her shocked 10-year-old daughter Dali turned to her and said, "Wow mum, I've never seen you do something like that without swearing or crying.
"You’re just much more patient now, there’s something different about you."
Speaking to Mamamia, Meshel explained that she thinks "it must be COVID".
She credits the global pandemic with making her a more patient mother, a more resilient human, a more balanced businesswoman, and apparently an expert at flatpack furniture.
Watch: Meshel Laurie on going through IVF alone. Post continues after video.
To get there however, Meshel says she experienced a bubbling over in almost every capacity in 2020; mentally, physically, psychologically, and spiritually.
Living in Melbourne with her twins Dali and Louis, and her mother who is in her early 70s and has emphysema, Meshel says she spent much of 2020 "genuinely frightened of COVID".
"I wouldn't let them out of the house. The fear initially was giving COVID to my mum so I was doing all of the outward facing jobs. But my hardest challenge was keeping my patience and temper when I was that fearful and tired.
"Suddenly I had two 10-year-olds, with their two little desks either side of me Zooming all day into school. That for me that was my mental health challenge, trying to deal with that and keep up with my work as they were constantly like ‘my Zoom link isn't working’. And then there's the pushing them to do their work because 10-year-olds are champions at avoiding work... it was a nightmare. I got really behind on my work and I couldn’t keep up. It was incredibly stressful," she told Mamamia.