A New "Normal"...
As I continue on my new found blogging journey, I was going to continue on where I left off with "Our Story" because I know you are all on the edge of your seats from the last one ;-) But I figured I would "interrupt your regularly scheduled program" and offer some inspiration during these days at home.
Some would describe these last few weeks as "surreal", "strange", or "scary" and the list can go on and on. The kids are at home, some parents are at home either working from home or laid off from their regular work. We can't really go out and do anything "fun" because we can't risk spreading germs or contracting germs. It's a lot to take in. We all fear the unknown. We have no idea how long these new changes are going to be in effect. I don't have a crystal ball, I can't see into the future but one thing I do know is this. It's our time to shine as a community. It's our time to be the BEST people we can be. If you're the praying type, it's your time to pray, because God will see us through this. And maybe this experience is God's way of telling us to slow down, spend time with those most important and DO good for others.
Some ways we can all help each other out...
- Check in on you neighbor or close friends that may not be able to go out. Every time I plan on going to the grocery store, I ask my neighbors if there is anything I can get for them to save them a trip. We live in an amazing neighborhood. We are the family that was running low on toilet paper because I refused to believe that this was going to be a problem a month ago. And of course I was checking everywhere with no luck. Two of our neighbors came to the rescue!! I can't believe how happy we were to get TOILET PAPER as a gift from our neighbors.
- Thank those who work in retail that are putting themselves in harms way so that we can get the supplies we need. I was getting groceries during my limited grocery run last week and this customer was literally hounding the manager about deliveries and specific items. He calmly responded to her demands but I could tell that he was becoming worn down. I walked over to him and said "Thank you. Thank you for working and unloading trucks and stocking shelves day after day". I told him that I was a nurse and that I understood how hard this can be. He smiled and kept on stocking.
- Give YOURSELF grace and practice self care. I once heard the saying "You can't pour from an empty cup" and it's the truth. Since I am a part time working parent, I see how hard both sides of the spectrum are. I work 24 hours a week as a RN and the rest of the time, I am home with the boys. Not gonna lie, some days are HARD. But I have to make myself take a step back and think, this is not our normal "normal" but for now it's our "normal". I take a deep breath and keep the day going. What are you doing for yourself these days when you're pulled in so many directions? For me, I continue to make the time to exercise every day. There are a lot of great resources out there for apps right now. The Peloton App is free at this time. They have some great workouts! I tried a yoga class and did it outside under my covered deck. Being outside in the fresh air with my mat was amazing and totally reset me for the rest of the afternoon. Also, I'm not sure if the Beachbody on demand app is free right now but it is an inexpensive option with TONS of workouts. I have been doing this for years. One more option is live streamed classes. At my gym, NuAge Fitness, there are classes such as Tabata, Zumba and Yoga offered daily. Check out their site for more info.
- Let the kids be kids. I have found that a schedule of some sort has kept our sanity over the last few weeks, especially for the schoolwork aspect. We don't follow it to a "T" but we do use it as a guideline for structuring our day. On the days when it's nice outside, we are OUT as much as possible. But I'm finding that I don't have to have activities for them. They are perfectly happy digging for worms...science can be checked off the block for that day! We even played a games of tag, running around the house. When this "stay at home" order first started, I think we were all overwhelmed with resources on how to entertain kids. I even posted this huge list on my fb page to share with others. Don't get me wrong, it's a nice list and I'm keeping it in my back pocket for rainy days. However, we all seem to do better when we just keep it simple. If you are looking for resources, a good one that is free right now that both boys enjoy is Scholastic. They have lessons in all subjects and activities and stories to relate. We have also taken a few virtual tours of zoos etc. But the most important thing right now is not the school work, not the activities, not striving to fit a thousand things into one day....the most important thing is to love them and love them hard. Make them feel safe. If we as adults are scared about these uncertain times, imagine what is going through their little minds, not being able to see friends and not understand what's going on. Find creative ways to keep in contact.
- Call a friend. Yep...you heard me right!! Pick up the phone and connect!! Texts are easy but we as humans crave connection and right now when we can't physically connect, use this time to video chat. FB messenger, Google Duo and the Marco Polo app have been great resources for us.
Let's continue to lift each other up during these crazy days. Let's continue to pray for the world as a whole. Let's continue to show each other that we are made to help each other and there are better days to come. And when they do...we will be ready for a change with open arms and grateful hearts.