There is no doubt that this is an unprecedented time of uncertainty for all of us. Never before has something so vastly impacted every aspect of our lives. And perhaps the most difficult part for many of us, there is no end in sight.
This uncertainty weighs heavily on everyone, but it is especially difficult when you are trying to maintain a sense of normalcy for your littles among school closures, cancelled trips to Disney, and a halt to seeing the grandparents.
I have to be honest, for me, every day has brought the entire spectrum of emotions. I laugh at stupid COVID-19 memes on the internet, I worry about my parents, I’m scared for our finances, I’m angry at Gen Z’ers on spring break, and I cry for our community as layoffs continue. Among all of those, there are also those moments when my daughter is on my lap and I’m reading her a book and everything feels normal.
Then the reality and panic comes back when it hits me that nothing is normal.
2020 brought such excitement to our household. Our best friends were getting married at the end of March, our careers have been moving upwards, our daughter is thriving. Life has been fantastic and secure and everything we had hoped it would be.
And then it started. Little news stories here and there about a virus spreading in Wuhan, China. And then in other countries. Then in California…Washington… and now all fifty states. Today it seems you can’t turn on the news or open your computer without hearing about the latest death toll, or a new state instituting a “shut down”, “mandatory social distancing” or “pausing”. If you can’t keep up with all the terms don’t worry, me neither.
My daughter is two. She doesn’t know what’s going on. No matter what shocking update is being given on COVID-19, she just knows she wants mommy to play with her. So I swallow the creeping fear, we play Barbies and I allow my heart to thrive and my mind to rest.
At this point, we’ve been social distancing for about thirty days. My husband and I are still working and doing essential stops but, that’s it. Despite us one month in, our daughter seems to thankfully be fine with our new routine. The hardest part has been limiting contact with her Mimi (who she typically sees on the daily) but, at the moment she is somewhat content with FaceTiming. Thank God for technology.
I’m also thankful. Thankful every single day that this is typically not affecting children. At least, not severely. I can’t imagine what would be happening if that were the case. Things are bad enough.
Sometimes, late at night, my thoughts start to go down the rabbithole. What if her grandparents get sick? What if my husband or I lose our jobs? Am I doing everything I can to keep our family safe? Am I making the right decisions? What is our community going to look like when this is over? When is this going to end?
These questions don’t have any real tangible answers, which is a hard pill to swallow when you are a Type A like to plan everything out kind of women.
I keep repeating this mantra to myself: We take it day by day, and we get through it together. I know that even as I write this, things are changing. Maybe even by the time you read this, we will have turned the curve. I can only hope.
So, today, I will hold my daughter close, take the time to enjoy the day with her, wash my hands, and let go of the things I cannot control. Remember, we will get through this together.
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