7 Things the pandemic has taught me about parenting
Y’all, can we just say I stan with every person who says this whole year has been crazy. I concede, parenting during Covid-19 has me going in circles.
1. Take one day at a time
Ok, let’s be clear, I’m not saying don’t have a schedule/routine. Scheduling does not go out of the window when parenting during COVID-19. What I am saying is each day will be different. How you manage emotions, and any curveballs thrown your way will be different. I find journaling and using a planner helps with the process. Remember to take each day as an isolated event. Don’t let any craziness you encounter bleed into the next day. Every day I wake up and remind myself, “Today is a new day!” If you try to maintain that mindset, you’ll be less likely to throat punch someone. (Kidding…not kidding)
2. Solitude forces you to face your demons
If your family is adhering to Covid-19 Quarantine, you are feeling the strain of being home most of the time. I can’t lie, as much as I consider myself a “homebody,” I like to have options. Staying home more has forced me to realize, I (and the other people in my house) have too many THINGS. Things are my demons. As a result, I’ve spent a good part of the quarantine purging and shipping those items off, thanks to pleasepickup.org. Thank goodness they have a pickup service, cause whoo chile these things would still be in my house. And if you’re wondering, I’m still purging, don’t judge.
3. Be flexible
For the most part, I go with the flow, but even those who are more easy-going have must-have routines. Now before you start rolling your eyes and barking, “WAY-ment!” Hear me out. As I mentioned earlier, routines are necessary. But we have to know when to let go of our daily regimens and embrace spontaneity. I know it sounds scary, but think about it; this year has been far from normal. Knowing how to adjust makes life that much easier and teaches your children how to adapt too. Sounds like a win-win to me. Add that to your distance learning syllabus!
4. Have grace
With parenting during COVID-19, the deaths of young blacks killed by the cops or everyday life – know that you are not alone. Just as you are trying to cope with “All the things”, so is everyone else. Especially your children. This is hard, we all miss traveling, Sunday brunch, hanging with friends, extracurricular activities and playdates. Ok, maybe not playdates, but your kids would say different.
We are all human and social interaction is key in the formula of our existence. Adjusting to seeing everyone and doing less is just that A BIG adjustment. So remember to have grace as we are all trying to adjust to what everyone is calling our new normal.
If you’re not really sure what that means, let me help:
- When your kid’s having a meltdown during virtual class because he just wants to go to school with his friends. TRY to keep calm. Remember, he’s battling a lot of frustrations.
- If your coworker is late for a call, don’t assume they’re slacking. They may be filling the role of teacher to small children.
- If your spouse is irritable, give them space. The new pressures of our new work environment are getting the best of everyone. Besides, flipping out could potentially lead to you wearing that orange jumpsuit. And although orange is the new black, you can’t belt the jumpsuit, nor wear heels. (I’ll give you time to let that sink in.)
5. Use time wisely
When you spend every aspect of your life in your home, it’s easy to lose track of time creating a schedule and maintaining it is so important especially for children. And if you’re managing multiple Things, work, household chores, distant learning schedules (or getting kids out of the house on time for school) and running a business/content creation planning is must. (Learned this one the hard way and still perfecting) And If you’re reading this and saying, hold up sis, you just said, take one day at a time and be flexible, know I meant EVERY word. Yes, planning is essential. No plan prompts chaos. So plan but know that plans are made to be broken and if there are, the world will not end. Trust me, if we’re still here through all of this…well you get it.
6. Celebrate often (yes, even the smallest milestones)
Finding joy amidst the chaos is necessary. Whether it’s your little one making their bed or your spouse making your bed. Celebrate it. These days we have to find joy in the little things. For me, there’s nothing like breaking out in song and dance for the most random things. See how much confusion and excitement it will spark. They may join in. Either way, it’s a must. Don’t believe me, try it and see the response. Come back and tell me the result.
Yup, you read that right! With everyone being in close quarters, it opens up the doors for more bedroom action. So that means you need to double up on your Kegels. If you’re in awe that this one made the list, don’t be. Read it again. In the infamous words of my friend and renowned Sex Therapist Ieshai Bailey owner of Bailey House of Wellness, SQUEEZE! If you do 50 do 100. If you’re a G and do 100 a day (which is recommended) then up the anti and do 200. I say this a lot, but trust me, you’ll thank me.