Parenting today is not easy. Remember the routine? Kids up, breakfast, gather backpacks and sort out lunches and off we go! Taking kids to school, sending them on the bus, walking them to class, whatever your daily start was, I’m guessing it’s not like that this week.
The global pandemic has closed schools in the U.S. and around the world. Children are now at home and parents are teaching and employing “distance learning”. For some parents this is unimaginable, they never thought they’d be teaching their kids in home school. For others it’s an extension of what they do every day, and they can just take it in stride.
Parenting has changed. Parenting today means having your kids 24/7 if they’re at home working and non-essential employees. Isolation is changing the way we parent our kids. Some are doing their level best to keep a sense of routine, school work, house chores and the like, while still others are treating this like summer vacation has started early.
Some parents find that homeschooling while they work is nearly impossible so they are putting school work on the back burner, due to having their paying work as priority. Others have seamlessly integrated school and work time into the same time slot (usually with older kids), and both are diligently completing their work.
If you are the parent who is totally overwhelmed with distance learning, believe me you’re not alone. Perhaps your partner is better at supervising homeschool than you are, especially if you’re working full time.
This is only temporary, and you are not being judged on your teaching ability, or your ability to keep a house or do your laundry. Simply being in isolation with the stress of the virus out there can be utterly exhausting and some moms and dads have a tough time just keeping everyone clean and fed. Don’t feel alone. There are many parents out there who are in the same boat with you.
Parenting today means remembering to pick your battles and love your kids; value the time that you have been given to spend with them during this enforced lockdown. Soon enough we’ll be back on our regular schedules and they’ll be back in class. I hope you will have made some fond memories of your times together. I’m sure those memories won’t be about school work or chores, but the lighter, more fun and happy times you are spending together.
Take time to do activities that are bonding and encouraging and uplifting together. Remind your kids how much you love them and show them every day. Make memories for the future. They don’t stay young for long, and before you know it they’re out of the house and on their own. No matter how much you may wish for it now, keep them close and keep them safe with you.
Those are the things they’ll remember. Not all the death and doom and gloom, but the close, happy feelings of family that you shared during this time.