Pandemic. Covid-19. Social distancing. Testing. Wash your hands. Toilet paper jokes. Meat shortage. Flour shortage. Re-opening. How many times do we hear or read these words per day? It can be a lot. Add in work, homeschooling, house chores, exercise, and cooking. Sprinkle on some Lord of the Flies behavior from your kids and you have what you could call a high stress environment that does not let up.
How do you cope?
Somehow the pandemic has brought me even closer to my crew. Everyone is beyond lucky to reap the benefits of the internet and stay connected to their micro and macro communities. There are surprisingly times when we feel there are too many Zoom commitments. How did we ever manage full time work, activities, school, and social plans when free and safe to roam? Mind blowing.
My kids are interacting differently with me and each other. They share. They laugh. They work together. They give each other space. They are co-existing. Tasmanian devil moments do exist, but they are doing it. They are coping with this mess of a situation. And I am grateful.
Adulting with the hubs can get annoying, but we are stopping the irritable behavior earlier than we would have normally. Turn up the laughter and self care. No more whining about him social distance golfing. I now grab my bike and get lost in the moment. Meditation. Deep breathing. Laughing. Lots of it. And some friendly competition keeps the fire lit.
The grandparents. Oh those grandparents. They are spectacular. How do we help? Can we do science experiments in the driveway? Can we have a remote picnic, walk or bike ride? Can we help with school work or educational activities? It’s endless and I am forever indebted.
Teachers. Teachers! The profession that has finally been praised for all its worth. The pay scale better change! The support, guidance, kindness and creativity is endless.
My good ol’ forever friends. They are always there. My sisters that aren’t biological, but feel like they are. I don’t remember not knowing them. The daily texts have morphed into Zoom calls and activities to share remotely. The Zooms are packed with ridiculous kid stories, guidance on how to entertain the fam, what to cook, how to stay active, the latest self care fads, and most importantly, how to stay sane.
The kids’ friends and their families fill up my bucket. Knowing my kids are happy, engaged albeit remotely, and laughing with their friends keeps me going. Childhood socialization is critical for development and it is nearly impossible to make new friendships right now. Kids have a fluid way of interacting and understanding. Video chats add an artificial layer that they are not as equipped to manage. But, they are adaptable and resilient. They now communicate in ways that don’t require staring deep into each other’s eyes via video chat. For example, my 9 year old chats while simultaneously playing video games with a friend. It’s their new way of speaking. A very heartwarming one considering the current milieu.
My crew makes my small world go round. Some days I’m dizzier than others but for now I’ll just keep smiling and laughing until this ride slows and we can exit. Will you keep your crew just as close once it’s safe to roam?