As I write this, we are in our second week under a statewide Stay at Home Order. My family has been home much longer than that though. My husband began working from home six weeks ago and schools in our county closed nearly four weeks ago. Other than an occasional trip to the grocery store, we haven’t been anywhere in weeks. To comply with the Stay at Home Order, we’ve even stopped visiting grandparents and the kids are no longer playing with their neighborhood friends.
As our days in Lock down tick by, turning into weeks and then months, it feels harder and harder to be a patient and creative parent. We’ve roasted marshmallows and camped in the backyard, done art projects, held Easter egg hunts around the house, chatted with family and friends via FaceTime and Zoom, and ridden bikes for more miles than I care to count. Some days I feel like I’m doing ok with this quarantine parenting thing, but most days I struggle to cope with our “new normal.”
I recently came across this online article from the Washington Post, “Parenting during coronavirus: What to know about playdates, online learning, and more,” www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/2020/03/14/parenting-tips-coronavirus/. The article has good information for parents about helping kids learn from home, playdates, entertaining kids, working from home, and dealing with the anxiety and stress that we are all feeling right now. I have used several tips from the article including setting a daily routine, relaxing a bit on the kids’ screen time limits, paying the kids for chores, organizing family sports competitions outside, and being deliberate about daily physical activity. The article has links to other helpful resources as well.
Hang in there parents! We’re all in this together and we’ll get through it one day at a time.