We’ve been at this whole pandemic thing for about 8 months and I have to say, for me, it’s going MUCH better than it was in March. I think for many of us we have fallen into our routines and managing pandemic life feels a little less daunting.
So, to an extent, things have gotten easier. Yet when I am ask how I am doing or even when I ask anyone I know, the answer across the board seems to be “fine, we are doing fine.”
I am figuring out this pandemic life. Virtual School-check! Cooking three meals a day-check! Navigating working from home and my family’s needs-check! Only making one trip to the grocery store a week-check! Seeing friends in appropriately socially distanced ways-check! So I am totally “fine,” right?
I was holding it together and doing all the things I needed to do until something so small felt like it was going to break me.
I went to pick up the packet of stuff the school sent home for virtual learning and inside my 3rd graders of bag of supplies…. There was a recorder.
Yes, you know what I am talking about, the horrible sounding instrument we all learned to play as kids. I looked at this thing with such disdain and was horrified and FURIOUS that the school district would do this to ME.
I sat in the car yelling and flailing the recorder in the air (I admit, I must have looked like a lunatic!) How dare they send home this instrument that they know my son will play as loudly and as often as he possibly can! How dare they think I have more time and energy to teach my child how to play the recorder! How dare they send home this horrible sounding thing, knowing that this would break me!? Why are they trying to test me when I am finally “fine?”
Ok, so maybe I was a little dramatic about the recorder (It is hidden by the way and is only allowed to come out for music class), but it got me thinking about how many of us are “fine” as we are doing our best to keep it together for ourselves, our children and our families and then have these small moments that break us and let us know maybe we are not as “fine” as we think we are.
Being “fine” takes a lot of energy and is not easy. You have your everyday roles of being moms, dads, friends, and professionals. Doing these things alone is hard enough, but now add the weight of the pandemic. We are all carrying around an extra burden of making decisions about health and safety in everyday choices and trying to manage our kids’ strong emotions as they struggle with missing their friends and the challenges of distance learning. We are trying to make things as normal as possible… yet we are missing our freedom, sanity and connection. It‘s a lot to handle!
Being “fine” means we continue to adjust to the challenges of the pandemic. We may be resilient, but acclimating to this new normal, doesn’t negate the fact that we still miss our lives prior to 2020.
So, for those of you that need to hear this. You are a superhero and doing a great job in an impossible situation. Yet, even a superhero needs a break. You have permission to not be “fine” every once in a while…even if that means losing it in the school parking lot over a 3rd grader’s recorder!
If these moments of not being “fine” feel like they are too much and are too hard to handle, please reach out to see how therapy could help you firstname.lastname@example.org or (908)445-5531