LIFE IS OUT OF CONTROL
Okay, let’s not feel too guilty about this: With the age of wealth and technology came the popular delusion that we human beings can pretty much control the world.
AHHH…BUT HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF!
Let’s be honest, we thought we were immune. Something like this was so unlikely to happen, even though the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic already did this to our world. Viruses are viruses. They really haven’t changed much with time… have they?
Then after about 102 years or so, good Ol’ Mother Nature throws our spoiled rotten human population a huge curve ball with no known treatment and no cure that also happens to spread like wildfire AND kills even the people who are healthy, wealthy and wise. Nobody in the world (not even “the experts”) know what to do. Making things even more difficult is the growing portion of the public that has the false belief that they cannot possibly be infected by this disease and it’s more important to get back to “normal life” despite the danger. Our daily existence has become a chaotic tornado of lost freedoms, annoying politics and people in leadership positions who cannot agree on anything.
REMEMBER THAT OUR CHILDREN LEARN FROM US
Sadly, the human beings who are impacted the most by the way we adults are reacting to this crisis is our youth. They observe, absorb and internalize every attitude, idea, reaction and coping skill that the adults around them model. The long term emotional impact on many children during this pandemic will be bigger than a lot of people think. Yet, we are humans and we can’t be perfect all the time. This is scary for us and the uncertainty rubs off on the youth who are watching our every move. Yikes!
MY OWN SOMETIMES CRAPPY COPING SKILLS
I’ve come to the point where I can’t look at Facebook for days because the posts are so negative and that makes me feel too anxious. My own coping skills have failed at time. I’ve snapped at my husband, I’ve yelled at my kids, and I’ve been doing the emotional eating thing. I’ve also told myself that I need to give up on this on-line learning the schools want us to keep up with. My kids’ negative attitudes towards it and the power struggles between mom and children are now admittedly beyond my coping skills some days. It’s just so damn hard right now and on-line learning is really hard for most younger kids. Elementary through middle school students in general are motivated by social learning and more kinesthetic modalities. (I’ll talk about this and my own school reopening proposal in a future blog).
OH WELL.. LEARN TO LIVE RIGHT?
So I told myself, stop feeling guilty and accept what’s happening. Live in the present moment and ride the wave. Yes, my kids may not do the on-line learning thing very much longer…or it will vary day by day. One day I may just say we’re done, it’s summer vacation starting RIGHT… NOW! They might fall behind in many of their learning skills, but I have to trust that the schools will dial back the curriculum and figure out a plan for them to catch up eventually. I’m okay with that.
In the meantime, we can still read books together and practice piano. They can learn math through baking and learn science through gardening. I can pull out the occasional math or language arts worksheets from web sites like TeachersPayTeachers.com. I’m still going to take my kids to the hiking trails when I can. They can learn to breathe the fresh air, appreciate the flowers and learn about the animals that live in that climate zone. Here’s an opportunity to show them how much cleaner our air quality is right now and discuss what we can do to help maintain this! I’ll teach them how to better manage their own world…but not control it.
EVEN MORE IMPORTANTLY!
I’m still going to apologize to them for yelling and losing my cool. At least they will see that I recognize when I am being over-reactive instead of calm and responsive to problems. I’ll tell them that I will work harder at being more relaxed and flexible the next time I get stressed out or upset. I’m going to practice my 15 minute yoga stretches most mornings. I’m going to teach myself to accept that I’m not in control, but just managing life the best I can.
Wait a minute! Isn’t this what our political leaders should be doing? Hmmm…??
I will trust myself to find a way to “ride the wave” and be glad about the thing that is most important in my life: My healthy and… generally… happy family. 🙂
Here’s a funny mommy moment. Enjoy a good laugh!
Me: “Katherine it’s time to get off the computer and go for a walk at the Open Space Preserve I want to check out this morning.”
Katherine (age 8): “I don’t want to walk, my legs hurt from yesterday’s walk! (still glued to the computer).”
Me: “Let’s go, get your shoes on please.”
Matthew (age 6): (Is really mad because I distracted him from his Lego building and made him mess up. Now he’s having a major melt down and won’t get in the car).
Me: (Shouting from my front driveway): “I’m loading the car now! Get in, stop whining, and we are doing what I want to do today because my sanity is important! We are GOING TO THE OPEN SPACE PRESERVE!!
Random mom walking by on the sidewalk with her little boy is now smiling and trying not to laugh at me.
It took about 15 minutes of waiting in the car for Matthew to eventually and tearfully get in. Everyone enjoyed the walk.. sort of. Katherine complained about the possible snakes in the brush and pouted a lot about wanting to go home. I still enjoyed the fresh air and the “quiet” beauty.
Wish I could hear that mom talking to her husband about what she witnessed in front of my house today. I’m sure she can relate. HA! HA!