Last night, we received the email I’d been anticipating but still dreading. School is out for the next two weeks. Beyond that, I’m not overly confident we will re-start but that remains to be seen.
Until now, COVID-19 or the coronavirus was something I saw on the news. I shopped a bit, preparing for the worst-case scenario but thinking I was a longshot. It made me feel better, protected. If I had the supplies, I wouldn’t need them.
We are at the point now where it doesn’t matter if you think COVID-19 is an overblown media frenzy or a real threat—it’s happening.
Schools are closing. People are struggling to figure out how to make ends meet if they can’t go to work. They’re trying to figure out how to work from home with children present. Grocery store shelves are bare. The world as we know it has changed.
As an adult, I’m struggling to wrap my head around it all. I’ve never had this experience, so I’m working on all the “wh” questions—when, why, what to do…? But I’m also trying to figure out how to talk to my kids. I don’t want to scare them, but I want them to understand why it’s important to (actually!) wash their hands. I need to tell them why they don’t have school or soccer practice.
We’re having to come together as a family in a way we haven’t before. I’m trying to remember patience when I’m used to working at home alone all day and suddenly there are tiny humans up in my business every 33 seconds. I’m also trying to remember patience with the big human (AKA my husband) who is also suddenly working from home and trying to help me wrangle those tiny humans.
I’m also remembering my gratitude. It can be hard—but I have a home, a job that allows me to work from home and a full pantry.
If I get coronavirus it will put me out of commission, but it won’t take me out.
One thing we can all afford is a bit of kindness to one another. Our country has been so divided over whether COVID-19 is a cause for concern. Social media has become a place of keyboard sparring and personal attacks.
As we all try to adjust to whatever this new normal looks like in our homes, maybe we can take a second and try to support each other too. It’s here, friends… for the foreseeable future. Maybe in the midst of all the chaos we can choose to be better for it. While you’re working to wrangle those tiny humans, maybe you can give them a hug, too.
Jessica Tyler is wife to Jeff and mom to two boys, Will and Ben. She is a non-profit professional by day and an expert in cleaning marker off upholstery by night. She lives in Colorado with her boys and her cat Gracie, who adds another female to the mix. You can find her on her blog,I Dream of Naptime