Six Things Moms Have Learned During Social Distancing
The world is opening back up, and our “new normal” is looking a whole lot more new than normal. There is still a lot of uncertainty, and I think a lot of us may be wondering when will life feel like it used to. Will it ever?
Instead of dwelling on that tailspin of a question, I’d rather spend some time talking about what I - and we, collectively as moms - have learned during this time of quarantine and social distancing. We may all come from different backgrounds and walks of life, but I’d wager that we all walked away with a few foundational learnings that apply no matter who we are or where we live. Let’s discuss.
photo: The Seattle Times
1) Restaurants are not the reason why we are fluffy. Turns out, I can keep myself just as fluffy by eating only the groceries I have in my own home and going nowhere near a restaurant. Who knew? Do not question my resourcefulness when it comes to whipping up something fattening and delicious with only the things I find in my pantry.
2) Our husbands become different people when they are at work. Anyone else recently learn that your husband is the, “let’s put a pin in it and circle back Tuesday” guy? Or maybe you’ve learned that your husband has a totally different voice when he’s speaking to colleagues than to you? It’s alarming, and frankly I’m not here for it.
3) Tablet time is not as destructive as we thought. Fine, I’ll say it. My kids’ tablet time is up by at least 200% at this point. I beat myself up about it at first, but I have realized that screen time these days doesn’t mean just sitting idly in front of a television or computer. My kids have learned SO MUCH while being out of pre-school and attending Blippi University. My 4 year old can identify almost every well-known dinosaur by name and tell you something interesting about it. My 2 year old knows all of her shapes, colors, numbers, and the alphabet. Wish I could take credit for that - and yes I’ve played a role - but I largely have to thank the amazingly fun, fresh, and educational content my children watch during their screen time.
4) We have a new appreciation for our husbands’ jobs, and they have new appreciation for ours. There is nothing like seeing my husband in action to make me understand the burdens of his job. We are both business owners, and I often envy that he gets to do his job without also having to balance our children. Seeing him do his job from home during quarantine really opened my eyes to the stress, anxiety, and pressure he deals with every day. I have a newfound respect for him. Likewise, I believe he respects me more now, too. He never understood what it’s like having an important phone call while children are screaming in the background, begging you for Cheez-It’s and apple juice but NOT IN THAT CUP, THE PURPLE ONE! He gets it now.
5) Our teachers are severely and outrageously underpaid. Can I get an Amen? Why are our teachers not propped up as heroes in our communities? Why do they have so many roles to juggle at once - instructor, social worker, counselor, and more? Why are so many of them getting paid less than $50k a year and are still expected to furnish their own classrooms, buy their own supplies, etc? You know what, Ms. Wilson? You need some folders - you’ve got ‘em. Tissue boxes? I’m all over it. Need me to give up ONE afternoon and be a room mom so that you can maybe steal a few minutes to get some planning done? You bet. Just get these kids out of here for a little while, feed them and love on them, and let ME fight for our educational system to do better for you. You deserve it.
6) We are more resilient than we think. Life has thrown things at us in 2020 that we could have never seen coming. I’m exhausted, and I’m just a mom of two with a business to run. I can’t imagine the front line workers, the essential workers, the grocery store clerks, and more, who have had to face frightening circumstances that I’ve been privileged to protect myself and my family from. But we are all in this together. We have all had to adapt to a new and scary normal. We have all had to try to explain it to our kids. And you know what? We did it. We ARE doing it. We are strong, brave, amazing women who have made it through the unimaginable. We can do anything.