I am a mother of two. I have one in daycare and the other is in elementary school. Navigating through today’s current events is scary. As mothers we are supposed to be able to explain to our children “why” when life happens. Unfortunately, I can only explain to my elementary aged daughter what COVID-19 is, what social distancing means and what effective hand washing looks like. I know I’m unable to explain to her when this will all pass. And that is hard on both of us.
I’ve come to realize, I’m not the only mother carrying this heavy weight on my shoulders. Because we are supposed to have the answers. We are supposed to understand the facts, action steps and plan for our future. We are supposed to be able to protect our families. But, it’s so hard right now when we just don’t know how to.
I’m sure by now, you’ve experienced grocery stores running low on supplies such as pantry items, house hold essentials and other necessities. Honestly, it’s scary. It’s been difficult for me to process why people would attempt to purchase items to stock pile in their homes, leaving others without. Amidst this chaos, we are all attempting to seek control. Maybe those stock piling feel that this is the only way they can feel some sort of organization and planning during a scary and unknown time. They can control how prepared they feel during these difficult times. I get it. And thankfully as the weeks pass, stores have been able to play catchup with their supplies.
Several weeks ago when the state of Minnesota determined schools would be transitioning to distance learning, to be honest, I felt relief upon hearing the news. I realized the feeling of relief came from the knowing. I knew what I needed to plan for the upcoming weeks. I knew that I would have to put a plan in place to continue online learning for my elementary aged daughter. It sounds so small – perhaps silly, even – but I know I’m not alone in this.
The irony this pandemic has shown me, is that I am often overwhelmed by actual real-life and the day to day grind. The weekly plans for school work, extra-curricular activities, kids’ birthday parties and doctors appointments, all while balancing work. There have been so many times I’ve wished life would be eventless and that things would slow down. There, I said it.
So for the last few weeks and those still to come, I’ve realized it’s okay… It’s okay to feel out of control. It’s okay to feel like you don’t have the answers to all the things your kids will ask you (including math homework). It’s okay to allow your child to FaceTime their friends for some social time on a school night. It’s okay for you to set up a Zoom happy hour with your gal pals several evenings in a row.
And I firmly believe everything is going to be okay. I fully encourage you to take this time to find community within your community, give yourself some slack, and know that you are a good mom.