Over the last several weeks I’ve checked in with many of my mom friends. Most are not handling the current state of things very well. Sometimes that last sentence is true for me too. However, no matter how I am feeling I’ve found when talking with them I mirror their frustrations and don’t dare say that staying home feels like a blessing for me and my family.
I have been known to look on the bright side or think, ‘it could be worse.’ I also feel like I’m usually swimming upstream as I constantly try to slow down our personal pace in a very fast-paced world. This forced stay home means the pace of the world finally matches mine. We aren’t rushing off to practice, lessons, or rehearsals.
We now have time to enjoy the little things. We’ve baked, we’ve cooked, we’ve played lots of games, we’ve built forts, we’ve introduced the kids to Star Wars, we’ve painted, we’ve sung songs, we’ve thrown dance parties, we’ve played dress up, we’ve read stories, we’ve told stories, we’ve listened to my interactive children’s podcast (shameless plug for Your Creation Station).
I feel truly lucky to have my kids home from school. I didn’t cry (and neither did either of my boys) when I waved goodbye on their first days of school. I was a little sad, but more proud and excited. I was excited for them to make friends and learn new things, but I was more excited to finally have a few hours for myself. A few years in, I still enjoyed those kid-free hours, however, I’ve always felt like my kids have grown up too fast. I would feel a twinge of regret for not making more of those pre-school hours we had, when we had them. This is the best re-do for that time.
I always thought I’d be that mom who was very active in my children’s learning. I bought all the workbooks, flash cards and other teaching tools that just ended up collecting dust. I taught the basics and have been a good-role model, but truth be told, once they were in school, I wasn’t very proactive with reinforcing their academics. Homeschooling has taught me how rewarding it is to see their knowledge grow.
I also keep thinking ‘if we had to have a quarantine I’m so thankful it’s happening now instead of the middle of winter and through the holidays.’ The change in weather lends itself to lots of outdoor activities. Getting outdoors and observing mother nature wake up has been another blessing. We have watched the buds on the tress slowly emerging from their winter homes. We’ve seen and heard the birds return from their migration. We have splashed in puddles and thrown mushy snow balls. But the best part is spending time together in the great outdoors.
Yes, I have days when I am pulling my hair out or pouring a second glass of wine at 5 o’clock, but they aren’t any more or less than before. I also know I will rejoice when school starts back up in the fall, but I know I will be proud that I did everything we could to make the most of this time.
Sometimes blessings come in disguise or at least this time, a face mask. However, we are making memories during this historical moment. We will all emerge from this having learned something from the experience. I realize I may be in the minority, but I know will look back on this stay home fondly.