What I’ve learned about parenting during a global pandemic:

Day 329 here in NY. Just kidding. It certainly feels like it. I was super stoked to design and start writing this blog and really didn’t want to jump off with this as my first post. Then I thought, let me pour this out of my head before it manifests.

Can we move on? I guess that’s a pretty silly question. I think it’s clearly on everyone’s mind. When will life “return to normal”, when can we “resume daily activities.” The truth is, in my head it is not going to be anytime soon. I want to add is that my husband is still working from home 8am-5pm M-F. So it isn’t like I get to kick it with my feet up, and lets be realistic that’s never the case with kids.

Everyone talks a lot about kids being permanently ‘scarred’ from this virus. I am not sure that is true of younger kids. When I say younger I mean children who are in daycare or preschool a few days a week. Kinda like my kids. My son is ever-thrilled that we are all home together. He is very attached to us and doesn’t really like to be without us. He does great at school and with his fantastic babysitter. He would just rather be with mom and dad. I get that and I think in a way that’s kinda great. I know that’s going to change as soon as he becomes a teenager, so for now I enjoy it.

My daughter, only turning a year next week has no idea. She sees everyday as a new opportunity to learn, play and eat new foods. I am lucky enough to get to see it. In a way it feels like an extended maternity leave. I had only went back to work when she was 4 months and by the time she turned 10 months. Legit the day she turned 10 months was my last day of physically working in my office.

I am positive that being home with 2 kids has helped us maintain a regular schedule in a not so regular time. My husband & I are asleep relatively early, around 10-11pm. (It was much later but now that the Ozark binge is over, and he won’t touch Tiger King. ) The kids still go to bed by 8. Well- the attempt is there. They still wake up early around 7, give or a take an hour. They require 3 square meals and snacks. They need fresh air and baths. Laundry is always done, dishes are cleaned and taken care of, and for the most part we stay on duty with household chores. FOR THE MOST PART. Sometimes it takes a bit of my switch flipping to send everyone (besides the baby) into cleaning mode. I do appreciate the attempt is there.

I enjoy a good drink. Alcohol, I mean. Its kinda hard to get schwasted when you are nursing your baby and you have to get up early or wake up several times a night. So in this case I think it prevents us from emerging our home full blown alcoholics. Which I guess in turn, is a good thing.

Benjamin: My 3.9 year old. Thats three years and nine months, just to clarify. He acts out a bit more for attention. He does try his best and we are coming out of this potty trained which is a plus. Benny has plenty of toys to keep him occupied but he wants to play with us or his sister. He misses his friends but FaceTime & zoom can’t really keep his attention all too long. We’ve learned that Ninja kidz are fantastic on youtube and we are kinda both obsessed with them. He is in the eating-like-a-bird stage, which is counter-productive when you are in the trying-to-conserve-food stage. I don’t let him touch anything near the front door and or any groceries or packages that come in until they are sterile. He doesn’t go in our front yard at all. We are lucky to have a fair sized back yard with a club house and swing set and slide. We have reviewed over and over correct hand washing routines. He knows about ” the virus”. Sometimes he calls it the Coronavirus and others just THE virus. His motto is “When the virus is over we are going to…” I don’t blame him. Its a great outlook and his little mind truly believes that’s the way it is going to unfold. We purchased a mask for him, it broke me when I had to put it on him. We of course made it fun and let him pick his design. A black mask with white kitty shaped heads. He has yet to NEED to wear, but we have it. For if and when….

Shealyn: My 1 year old. Shea clearly has no clue about said virus. She enjoys her days. Do I think this will affect her in any way. No. The only thing is we haven’t seen her pediatrician for her 10 month and her 12 month visit will be late. I suppose if I was a first time mom I would be panicking more. I feel like we got this, though. I feel for the mom’s who are struggling getting diapers and formula. I think formula is an excellent choice for any parent and the thought of mom’s not being able to feed their young babies destroys me. This is luckily our second go with cloth diapering so we didn’t need to buy diapers, except once. Shea has bad eczema, so when she has a break out we can’t use cloth because certain creams will ruin the absorbency of the diapers. That was tough to get one small box.

In closing, what I feel I can take out of this besides the obvious; appreciating this extra time with my fast growing beansprouts. Keeping kids away from germs is harder than I thought. Children aid in keeping a somewhat consistent schedule. The reality of them being ‘damaged’ from this is very low. No matter how or when you are potty training it is a battle and I’ve never been so grateful to cloth diaper. I am so so so over cooking every meal. Take out is true blessing and I can say with 100% certainty my grub hub account is missing me.

No parent is perfect. There is no correct way to handle any of this. Everyone is doing their best. I think each day depending on how we are feeling, our best may vary and that’s okay. My best one day might be 4 loads of laundry with a three course dinner, and another day microwaved hot pockets. If we can close our eyes at night and say we did our best, I think then that’s enough.

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